Tuesday, July 27, 2021


The burble of Mossy creek reassured Ty. They were close to the dugout. He remembered it being close to the creek when he visited with his father.
Crazy Jed Wiley’s passing more than a year before left his odd home empty. As the name of the house implied, it was dug into the side of the hill. As it was no more than a hole in the ground, it might conceal them. Most folks could walk by it and never know a door lay concealed by brush.

In my next new release, Lemon Pie by Lucinda, I send my hero and heroine running through the woods from kidnappers. An abandonded dug out provides the hiding place they need. But, why would anyone make a home in the ground?

Fifteen dollars! A man could have 160 acres by merely paying a $10 filing fee on his claim. Then, after five years, he could pay another $5 fee and own the land. The catch? 

The government required the settler to create a home and dig a well. For many who headed to the West, the trip took most of the money. People settling on the Great Plains had few trees to use in building the required house.

The answer was to live in the ground. These homes were known as pit houses or dug outs. Even Laura Ingalls spent part of her childhood in a dug out when the family lived in Minnesota.

A dug out consisted of one small room, usually. Some of these homes had walls made of sod bricks. Very few people had a floor made by laying down boards on the floor.

The pit house was a stop-gap means to provide a quick, temporary home. Good crops, often wheat, brought money to the bank for these pioneers. A clapboard house was a goal so they dug out could either be abandoned or used as a root cellar.

Two ladies named Lucinda...
Lucy never uses her real name and is surprised when Rev. Caldwell calls her that at the pie auction. She's even more surprised when Ty Goodson bids on her pie. He's never shown her a bit of interest, and whoever wins her pie will share a lunch with her.

What follows is a series of misadventures and a night spent in a cave. That night alone with each other leads them into a forced marriage—a shotgun marriage with Ty’s father holding the gun.

How will Lucy win the love of a man who longs for a different Lucinda? And what about the thieves Ty and Lucy witnessed burying something? Will they return?
Pre-order today on Amazon!

1 comment:

  1. Gr Gr Grandfather James Penberthy went out to far southwestern Minnesota for his claim. He had to live there in a dug out while building a house. He didn't want to bring a bride out until he had a house for her. He seems like such a nice guy!