Once I Too Had Wings: The Journals of Emma Bell Miles, 1908 - 1918 by Emma Bell MilesOnce I Too Had Wings: The Journals of Emma Bell Miles, 1908 - 1918 by Emma Bell Miles

Once I Too Had Wings: The Journals of Emma Bell Miles, 1908 - 1918

byEmma Bell Miles

Paperback | March 1, 2014

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about

Finalist for the 2015 Weatherford Award

Emma Bell Miles (1879–1919) was a gifted writer, poet, naturalist, and artist with a keen perspective on Appalachian life and culture. She and her husband Frank lived on Walden’s Ridge in southeast Tennessee, where they struggled to raise a family in the difficult mountain environment. Between 1908 and 1918, Miles kept a series of journals in which she recorded in beautiful and haunting prose the natural wonders and local customs of Walden’s Ridge. Jobs were scarce, however, and as the family’s financial situation deteriorated, Miles began to sell literary works and paintings to make ends meet. Her short stories appeared in national magazines such as Harper’s Monthly and Lippincott’s, and in 1905 she published Spirit of the Mountains, a nonfiction book about southern Appalachia. After the death of her three-year-old son from scarlet fever in 1913, the journals took a more somber turn as Miles documented the difficulties of mountain life, the plight of women in rural communities, the effect of disparities of class and wealth, and her own struggle with tuberculosis.

Previously examined only by a handful of scholars, the journals contain both poignant and incisive accounts of nature and a woman’s perspective on love and marriage, death customs, child raising, medical care, and subsistence on the land in southern Appalachia in the early twentieth century. With a foreword by Elizabeth S. D. Engelhardt, this edited selection of Emma Bell Miles’s journals is illustrated with examples of her painting.

Emma Bell Miles (1879 –1919) was a gifted writer, poet, naturalist, and artist with a keen perspective on Appalachian life and culture. She chronicled her home region through her prolific journals, illustrations, essays, poetry, and fiction.Steven Cox is the head of special collections and archives in the Lupton Library at the Universi...
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Title:Once I Too Had Wings: The Journals of Emma Bell Miles, 1908 - 1918Format:PaperbackDimensions:352 pages, 8.5 × 6 × 0.68 inPublished:March 1, 2014Publisher:Ohio University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0821420879

ISBN - 13:9780821420874

Reviews

Table of Contents

  • List of Illustrations
  • Foreword by Elizabeth S. D. Engelhardt
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: Walden’s Ridge
  • Chapter 2: Return to Walden’s Ridge
  • Chapter 3: Tragedy and Heartbreak
  • Chapter 4: “I Must Be Free!”
  • Chapter 5: Pine Breeze Sanitarium
  • Chapter 6: A Brief Separation
  • Chapter 7: The Good Gray Mother
  • Epilogue
  • Notes
  • Index

Editorial Reviews

“Reading Miles’s journals thirty-six years ago in the Oklahoma home of daughter Judith Miles Ford, I felt then the world must see her poignant observations of the natural and cultural environment of her Appalachia. Steven Cox’s choices from Miles’s personal writings reveal powerful insights of a woman who lived, loved, absorbed, and recorded her place more than 100 years past.”—Grace Toney Edwards, Professor Emeritus of Appalachian Studies and English, Radford University