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Book cover of A Lady's Ranch Life in Montana, Vol. 67

A Lady's Ranch Life in Montana, Vol. 67

by Isabel F. Randall, Richard L. Saunders

Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780806136400

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Overview of A Lady's Ranch Life in Montana, Vol. 67

"A faithful and unvarnished Record of a Settler’s Life" is how Isabel Randall described her letters when they were first published in 1887. Many foreign travelers published accounts of their visits to the American West, but Randall was one of the few European women to write about the western experience from the inside.

In 1884 Randall and her husband settled on a ranch in Montana hoping to make their fortune in the livestock boom. Randall’s letters home to England describe the practical affairs of daily life, rural social interactions, and the natural world around her. Her letters are cheerful, but they also suggest why the Randalls ultimately failed to achieve financial success.

In this new edition of A Lady’s Ranch Life in Montana, Richard L. Saunders supplements Randall’s letters with notes and an extensive introduction drawn from a wealth of primary sources. He sketches the Randalls’ lives before and after their western adventure, describes the stock industry that drew them to Montana, places Isabel’s letters in the context of English attitudes toward Americans, and discusses her neighbors’ reactions to her criticisms of local society.

About the Author, Isabel F. Randall

Isabel F. Randall (1860-1933) lived in Montana between 1884 and 1886, when she returned to England and published her collection of letters on her American experience.

Richard L. Saunders is Curator of Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Tennessee at Martin and the author of The Yellowstone Reader: The National Park in Popular Fiction, Folklore, and Verse.

Shirley A. Leckie, Professor of History at the University of Central Florida, is the author of Elizabeth Bacon Custer and the Making of a Myth and Angie Debo: Pioneering Historian.

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