Prairie Gothic
The Story of a West Texas Family
Texana - Ranching
6 x 9, 224 pp.
48 illus. Notes.
Pub Date: 10/04/2005
  cloth
Price:        $40.00 s

978-1-57441-200-0
  paper
Price:        $16.95

978-1-57441-203-1

Published by University of North Texas Press

To Receive E-News
 
 



 

Prairie Gothic

The Story of a West Texas Family

By John R. Erickson
Foreword by Elmer Kelton

Prairie Gothic is full of Texas lore. Erickson tells the story of people in the context of a specific place. This place, instrumental in shaping their lives, is the flatland prairie of northwestern Texas that has gone by various names (High Plains, South Plains, Staked Plains, and Llano Estacado), as well as the rugged country on its eastern boundary, often referred to as the “caprock canyonlands.”

One branch of Erickson’s family arrived in Texas in 1858, settling in Parker County, west of Weatherford. Another branch, sturdy Quaker farmers from Ohio, helped establish the first Anglo settlement on the Llano Estacado in 1881, near present-day Lubbock.

Erickson’s family interacts with significant historical figures, such as Cynthia Ann Parker, and includes members of the Estacado Quaker colony. There is the story of Martha Sherman, who died at the hands of the Comanche, and the tale of the notorious outlaw Tom Ross. Prairie Gothic also includes Erickson’s encounters with famous Texas writers, such as John Graves and J. Evetts Haley.

Burrowing deep into his West Texas roots, Erickson discovered people of substance and strong character, made that way in part by the challenges they faced in a harsh environment. He has created a fascinating blend of family and regional history. Excerpts from journals, letters, and other original sources enrich the narrative.

John R. Erickson, born in Midland, Texas, and raised in the Texas Panhandle town of Perryton, is a fifth-generation Texan with ranching roots back to the 1850s. He graduated from the University of Texas and studied at the Harvard Divinity School, but made his living on horseback while pursuing his writing. His Hank the Cowdog series has become a national favorite. He and his wife run their own ranch and commercial beef cattle operation. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters, Erickson has been profiled in Southern Living, American Cowboy Magazine, and on CBS’s Evening News with Dan Rather. He is the author of seven books in UNT Press’s Western Life Series.

What Readers Are Saying:

“Erickson has given us a vivid and well-rounded picture of several generations in a pioneer family. He has a smooth writing style, offers sharp and clean images, and his prose often has a poetic quality.” --Elmer Kelton

OF RELATED INTEREST

Birds of Tanglewood
All the Way from Yoakum
Rock beneath the Sand
Texas Courthouse Poster
Review Copy Request Form Desk Copy Request Form