Blue Shadows Farm: A Novel

Hardcover | September 16, 2009

byJerry Apps

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Fans of Jerry Apps will delight in his latest novel, Blue Shadows Farm, which follows the intriguing family story of three generations on a Wisconsin farm.
    Silas Starkweather, a Civil War veteran, is drawn to Wisconsin and homesteads 160 acres in Ames County, where he is known as the mysterious farmer forever digging holes. After years of hardship and toil, however, Silas develops a commitment to farming his land and respect for his new community. When Silas’s son Abe inherits Blue Shadows Farm he chooses to keep the land out of reluctant necessity, distilling and distributing “purified corn water” throughout Prohibition and the Great Depression in order to stay solvent. Abe’s daughter, Emma, willingly takes over the farm after her mother’s death. Emma’s love for this place inspires her to open the farm to school-children and families who share her respect for it. As she considers selling the land, Emma is confronted with a difficult question—who, through thick and thin, will care for Blue Shadows Farm as her family has done for over a century? In the midst of a controversy that disrupts the entire community, Emma looks into her family’s past to help her make crucial decisions about the future of its land.
    Through the story of the Starkweather family’s changing fortunes, and each generation’s very different relationship with the farm and the land, Blue Shadows Farm is in some ways the narrative of all farmers and the increasingly difficult challenges they face as committed stewards of the land.
 
 
Finalist, General Fiction, Midwest Book Awards

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From the Publisher

Fans of Jerry Apps will delight in his latest novel, Blue Shadows Farm, which follows the intriguing family story of three generations on a Wisconsin farm.    Silas Starkweather, a Civil War veteran, is drawn to Wisconsin and homesteads 160 acres in Ames County, where he is known as the mysterious farmer forever digging holes. After ye...

Jerry Apps, born and raised on a Wisconsin farm, is professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. His many nonfiction books include Every Farm Tells a Story, Country Wisdom, One-Room Country Schools, Cheese, Breweries of Wisconsin, Old Farm, and Ringlingville USA. He is also author of the novels In a Pickle and The Travels...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:390 pages, 9 × 6 × 1.2 inPublished:September 16, 2009Publisher:University Of Wisconsin PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299232506

ISBN - 13:9780299232504

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Table of Contents

Prologue—November 2000

Part 1
1. Ambush—March 1865   
2. New Orleans Hospital—March 1865   
3. Limited Duty—April 1865   

Part 2
4. Nature Hike—October 2000
5. Sophia—May 1866   
6. Accident—May 1866   
7. Cabin Building—May 1866   
8. Olaf Hanson—May 1866   
9. Sophia's Garden—May 1866   
10. Attack—October 1866   
11. Gardening—October 2000  

Part 3
12. School Board Meeting—October 2000  
13. Memories—October 2000  
14. Snowstorm—December 1866   
15. Wolfgang and Amelia—December 1866   
16. Housekeeper—December 1866   
17. Kitchen Stove—January 1867   
18. Opportunity—October 2000  

Part 4
19. William Steele—October 2   
20. Blue Shadows—February 1867   
21. Mixed Thoughts—May 1867   
22. Wedding—July 1867   
23. New Baby—February 15, 1868   
24. Elsa—April 1872   
25. Increase Joseph—Summer 1872   
26. Going Home—August 1872   
27 Modern Nature Educators, Inc.—November 2000  

Part 5
28. Modern Nature Educators II—November 2000  
29. Greed—Summer 1874   
30. Borrowed Hay Mower—Summer 1874   
31. Tornado—August 1875   
32. Silas and the Arrowheads—Summer 1876   
33. Kate Dugan—November 2000  

Part 6
34. Hiking Emma's Farm—November 2000
35. Abe and the Kittens—May 1880   
36. Quilting Bee—November 1885   
37. School Days—October 1886   
38. Christmas Program—December 1886   
39. Picnic—July 4, 1895   
40. Skinny-Dipping—August 1900   
41. Abe Farming—May 1901   
42. Ole Brothers Circus—July 1902   
43. New House and Barn—Spring 1903   
44. End of an Era—1905   
45. Gravel Pit—1906   
46. Merrifield Visits the Farm—November 2000  

Part 7
47. How Dry I Am—1919   
48. What Now?—Summer 1919   
49. Visitors—Summer 1920   
50. Purified Corn Water—Summer 1920   
51. Living High on the Hog—Summer 1922   
52. Sorrow-Joy-Sorrow—1925   
53. Depression, Then War—Summer 1932   
54. School Board Decision—November 2000  

Part 8
55. Threshing Days—August 1945   
56. Postwar—August 1945   
57. Jim Lockwell—August 1946   
58. Fishing—August 1947   
59. New Year's Eve—December 31, 1949   

Part 9
60. Green Growing Farms—Summer 1960   
61. Holding On—June 1980   
62. Longtime Relationship—1986   
63. Offer—November 2000  
64. Secrets—November 2000  

Epilogue   
Suggested Reading     

Editorial Reviews

“Jerry Apps weaves a good tale through three generations of family life, strife, and the fabric of the rural landscape that holds them together.”—David L. Sperling, editor, Wisconsin Natural Resources magazine