Colorado Mountain Women coverSurviving in the uncivilized mining camps was a day-to-day struggle for most of the women living in those makeshift communities of the late 1890s and early 1900s. The stories included in Colorado Mountain Women: Tales From the Mining Camps by Sherie Fox Schmauder convey many of their experiences. One of the stories relates a woman’s trek from China with her husband, her work on the railroad disguised as a boy, and her flight to a mining camp deep in the mountains after killing the man who murdered her husband. There in a laundry she discovered how to glean gold from miners’ dirty pant pockets.

All of the stories are fictional, but are inspired by the actual experiences of women who lived during that time period in the “Old West.” They battled extreme weather conditions, isolation that could drive a person mad, disease that often took their children from them, poverty and starvation, and primitive living conditions. Yet the West could not have progressed and prospered without the strength, courage, and determination of such women.

Sherie Fox Schmauder received a New Jersey Council for the Arts grant for prose in 1994. Her work has appeared in various magazines, with a focus on the effect of landscape on women, particularly those who persevere in difficult situations.

Colorado Mountain Women will instill a deeper respect for the women who helped settle the West, but whose stories have not been heard.

Purchase Colorado Mountain Women today from Western Reflections Publishing Company or Amazon.com.

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Coming Sequel

Schmauder is working on a sequel to Colorado Mountain Women: Tales From the Mining Camps. This second book will contain continuations of the stories in the first book.

For example, what will the woman whose husband is about to die in “The Terrible Weight of Snow” do after he’s dead? Or will he cling to life? Will her cabin collapse under the snow? Will she find a new life and a new love? Or will more bad things happen to her? And will it ever stop snowing?

And how about Sophie, the former Scarlet Daughter of Prosperity in “Good Friends.” Will she prosper in the mercantile business or will townspeople shun her? Will Horace and Sophie get together? Or will someone else interesting enter her life? And how will Elaina in “The Ten Commandments” get away from her righteous and abusive preacher husband? Or will she stay a prisoner?

Watch this website for updates.

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Read reviews of Colorado Mountain Women, or learn more about the historical background.

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