Civil War Bride Saves Home from Prairie Fire

Young woman works with neighbor to save homes from prairie fire.

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My parents were married during the Civil War, and my mother was a young girl when she moved out on the prairie with my father's people. She'd always lived in town and was often very lonely. One day when my father was away, she saw a big prairie fire come rushing from the east.

She called to Grandmother that she was going to fight it. Then she grabbed some grain sacks and matches and ran to the northeast corner of the farm. A young neighbor who had seen the fire came on the run with more sacks and matches.

Together they tore down a rail fence and backfired. They dipped the sacks in a creek and whipped out flames until they were utterly exhausted. But they saved their homes!

Mrs. David Lantz
Waverly, Iowa


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then CAPPER's WEEKLY asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from CAPPER’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.