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Return to Interviews Table of Contents Source File: cat.bohlke.i.19.xml

from Willa Cather in Person: Interviews, Speeches, and Letters

Selected and edited by L. Brent Bohlke

Lincoln & London: University of Nebraska Press, 1986

1923: OMAHA

Not only were Willa Cather's hometown newspapers interested in the progress of her career in the early twenties; other Nebraska papers followed her avidly, as well. Although the exact source for the information contained in her letters home is never identified, one can assume that her parents and family were interviewed often. The portrait commissioned for the Omaha Public Library naturally generated a certain amount of interest in that city, as the following article makes plain. Like the preceding entry, this one is not technically an interview but does give some indirect information about Cather's plans, her physical health, the portrait, and the public reaction to her latest novel.


Red Cloud, Neb. Oct. 12—Miss Willa Cather has written to her parents, Mr. & Mrs. C. F. Cather of Red Cloud, that she expects to leave France for home early in November. She plans to spend a short time in New York, and will probably be in Red Cloud early in December to remain until after the holidays. Her letters indicate that she is eager to be in Nebraska again.

An attack of neuritis in her right shoulder has considerably lessened the pleasure of her stay in France, and has interfered with her work. She is now experiencing some relief from this, and expects to continue her sittings for the painting that is being made by Bakst, who plans to lay aside his other work in order to be able to finish the painting before Miss Cather sails.

Miss Cather's book, One of Ours, is to be published in French soon. It is being read in English by some of the French people, and is winning much appreciation from them. Miss Cather writes that it is interesting when riding on the trains to hear the book and its author discussed in French, which she understands very well, the persons conversing little thinking that the author whom they are discussing is on the same train. The book is now in its sixtieth thousand and selling better than ever.

Miss Cather writes that her friends have suggested a special program when the portrait is placed in the Omaha library, and are considering having her mother, Mrs. C. F. Cather of Red Cloud, to unveil the picture. If this is pleasing to Mrs. Cather, it will be very satisfactory to her distinguished daughter. However, it is quite likely that plans will not be completed until Miss Cather arrives home.

Omaha World-Herald, 13 October 1923.