Gene Stratton-Porter (1863-1924) was born in Lagro, Indiana, a rural town that has always been small with fewer than 2,800 residents. Even so, today’s population is approximately four times the number who lived there when the writer was a child.
Later she married a man on whose property oil was discovered. She used the wealth that ensued to create a spacious 14-room house she called “Limberlost Cabin,” a Queen Anne-style log cabin in Geneva, where she lived for 18 years. She also took up photography and writing fiction. Eventually, she moved to Los Angeles to embark on a new endeavor in movie production as the industry was beginning to take off. Tragically, she died there in a car accident. Read these facts and more about the author at https://indianahistory.org/education/educator-resources/famous-hoosiers/gene-stratton-porter.
“If you are lazy, and accept your lot, you may live in it. If you are willing to work, you can write your name anywhere you choose.” — Gene Stratton-Porter, A Girl of the Limberlost
Her first book was published in 1903. “In all, Gene authored 12 novels, seven nature books, two books of poetry, children’s books and numerous magazine articles,” according to https://indianahistory.org.
Free e-books of Stratton-Porter’s work can be found at gutenberg.org. Her most popular books are A Girl of the Limberlost and Freckles.
According to https://www.indianamuseum.org/historic-sites/limberlost: “Gene Stratton-Porter wrote more than half her novels and nature books while living in Geneva. She wrote six novels – including ‘Freckles’ and ‘A Girl of the Limberlost’ — while living in Limberlost Cabin, which still includes her legendary desk that once belonged to Booth Tarkington, one of only three different novelists to win the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction more than once.”
Limberlost, at 200 East 6th Street, offers many enjoyable things to do including touring the home, visiting the greenhouse, and exploring the natural swampy landscape, rich with water birds and tall grass. Read more here: https://www.indianamuseum.org/historic-sites/limberlost.
Limberlost is the seventh stop on our Indiana Author Adventures Trail.