Marguerite Henry, Writer for Horse Lovers
Wild horses that swim from island to mainland shore? Who wouldn’t want to know more about that true story and mythic place made famous by Marguerite Henry’s book, Misty of Chincoteague?
Marguerite Henry (1902-1997) was the daughter of a publisher who worked at a library repairing books in her youth. She had a lifelong interest in writing and developed a special fondness for horses by reading the books of Zane Grey. For information about the author or her books, ask any long-time-horse-book reader and visit http://www.mistyofchincoteague.org.
The story of how Ms. Henry’s most celebrated children’s book series came to life can be seen in this video that we shot on location: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FgyhUJ1BxfI.
Read the author’s complete list of books here: fantasticfiction.com.
“But some animals, like some men, leave a trail of glory behind them. They give their spirit to the place where they have lived, and remain forever a part of the rocks and streams and the wind and sky.” Marguerite Henry, Brighty of the Grand Canyon
Miss Molly’s Inn
Miss Molly’s Inn in Chincoteague, now an elegant bed-and-breakfast, is where the author wrote the second most popular horse book in American literature of all time. (Misty was second to Black Beauty, which was published by British author Anna Sewell sixty years earlier in 1877.)
The Inn can be in high demand, especially in late summer because “On the last week of July each year, since 1927, the Chincoteague Volunteer Firemen (known as the Saltwater Cowboys) herd and swim the ponies across the Assateague Channel to Chincoteague. The ‘Cowboys’ then parade the ponies through the streets of Chincoteague and down to the auction grounds on Main Street.” (https://missmollys-inn.com/the-inn/misty-of-chincoteague)
The population of Chincoteague is fairly small and hasn’t changed much from the number of residents there when Misty of Chincoteague was originally published in 1947, according to https://population.us/va/chincoteague. However, in season, it can swell to five times its ongoing population and the traffic can get a little congested so plan your stay well in advance. That said, the distance from Miss Molly’s Inn to the main part of town is a fairly easy walk.
This is the last stop on our Virginia Author Adventures Trail. While the map below shows a route to Chincoteague by way of Norfolk, Virginia, the island can also be accessed from the north through Annapolis, Maryland.