Plains Folk, a commentary devoted to life on the great plains of North America, is now a special weekly feature on Main Street. Written by Tom Isern of West Fargo, North Dakota, and read in newspapers across the region for years, Plains Folk venerates fall suppers and barn dances and reminds us that “more important to our thoughts than lines on a map are the essential characteristics of the region–the things that tell what the plains are, not just where they are.” You can hear Plains Folk once a week during Main Street, weekdays at 3 pm CT with a repeat at 7 pm CT.
To read more Plains Folk commentaries, click on the “archives” link.
In June of 1880 the veterans of the First Minnesota Volunteer Infantry Regiment gathered at White Bear Lake for a reunion. There they passed a resolution honoring the man who had commanded them through the arduous actions at Antietam, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville, a man who had passed away on Vancouver Island the previous year. [...]
My Suzzanne and I are making the long trans-Pacific flight to New Zealand again, there to present a paper to the New Zealand Historical Association. This is tough duty, so let me explain what a prairie historian is doing in the South Pacific. For years we have been working on a line of research centered [...]
There were terrors of pioneer life that we scarcely know today, but once were commonplace. They were things too horrible to talk about—but people did talk about them, endlessly and gruesomely. For instance, rabies, or hydrophobia. This viral disease spread by animal bites struck fear into frontier hearts because it was treacherous as well as [...]
The pluviculturist, or rainmaker, is a stock figure, tragic and comic, in the story of the Great Plains. Generally he appears in history and fiction as a charlatan, hoaxing the unfortunate farmers of the prairies out of their savings when they were most vulnerable, in time of drought. In the 1956 film The Rainmaker, [...]
/media/plainsfolk/468.mp3 The audacity and persistence of Doreen Chaky, of Williston, North Dakota, have to be admired. She set herself the task of changing the way we tell the story of the Dakota War on the northern plains—a daunting challenge on two counts. First, because the subject is so important not only to our history but [...]
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