Life in Turn-of-the-Century Texas by Celia Yeary


Thanks to Petticoats and Pistols for hosting me today on their very popular blog. I appreciate this opportunity to visit. Please leave a comment and I will reply to each and every one.

I want to tell you about  newest book Wish for the Moon. It’s a story about sixteen-year-old Annie McGinnis who lives with her family on a self-sustaining Texas farm in 1901. She has two older brothers.

They live in a North Texas farming community, the kind in which almost everything the family needs is provided by their own hands. However, once a month, they dress up and ride in the horse-drawn wagon into town to sell eggs, buy a few supplies, and treat themselves to pie and coffee in the cafe.

I wrote this story with my grandparents’ farm and home in mind. I was born ‘down the roaCelia1d’ from their farm, and even though my birth was in 1940, they still lived much as our ancestors had.

Taking creative license, I placed Annie and her family in my grandparent’s home.

The old farmhouse was constructed of weather-beaten boards that had grayed with age. They used kerosene lanterns, a pot-bellied stove in the front room for warmth, a wood-burning cook stove in the kitchen, and a smokehouse for curing meat. Water came from a well  just outside the screened-in porch. Lowering a tin tube into the well, one pulled a trigger and the tube filled with water. When it was brought to the surface, someone “released the trigger” and the water filled a bucket. They used an outhouse which sat back from the house.










At the dawn of the Twentieth Century, sixteen-year-old Annie McGinnis wishes for a chance to see more of the world, since all she’s ever known is the family farm in North Texas. A mysterious visitor arrives who will change not only her life, but her family’s as well. To save Max Landry from a bogus charge, she follows him and the Texas Rangers back to the coal-mining town one county over where a murder occurred. The short journey sets Annie on a path of discovery—new horizons, an inner strength, and quite possibly…love.

Excerpt One: celia3

With one thumb, Max pushed back his worn felt hat so the men could see his face. He stood casually with his hands in his back pockets and one bony hip cocked. He waited until the group washed at the well. No one had looked his way.

One of the sons lowered the tin tube down by the rope and pulled the trigger, filling it with well water. When he brought up the tube, he emptied it into a galvanized bucket on the ground.

The older man talked as he took a rag from his pocket, dipped it into the water, and washed his face, hands, and neck.

“If we hurry, we might finish up tonight. Sure hope so. I’m afraid we’re gonna have some rain tomorrow or the next day.”

The girl pulled a rag from her pocket. “Kyle, move over, dang it. You’re hogging the bucket.”

“Ahhh, what a sissy.” He laughed as she pushed at him, not budging him an inch, but he moved over for her. “There you go, baby girl. Have at it.”

“Stop calling me that,” she muttered, and went about the business of washing up just as the men did. Being a girl, though, she took a little extra care, he noticed, making sure she hadn’t missed a spot of dirt somewhere on her face or neck.



Excerpt Two:

“Hi, y’all,” she said in a sweet sounding voice, sort of like water gurgling and sliding over smooth rocks, that swooshing, humming sound a person never gets tired of. “What are you doing here? I’ve never seen you around here before. Are you from over to Granbury? Or maybe Mineral Wells or Dublin?”

“Uh-uh. I’m from nowhere,” he said without grinning or anything. “I’m just a wanderer.”


“Why? Because I don’t have a real home, that’s why,” he answered. He never took his eyes off her big, pretty, blue ones, a little turned down at the corners, and framed all around with dark brown lashes.

“Everybody has a home, don’t you know that? Except maybe those hoboes that stay over yonder under the railroad trestle. Are you from over there?”

“Nope.” He shook his head and chuckled a little at her persistence and curiosity. “Aren’t you afraid of me?”

“Why should I be?” she asked with a mock frown. “Are you a crook who robbed a bank, or a bootlegger who runs whiskey, or maybe you’re just a no-account bum.”

Now her face split into the widest grin that made his cold empty heart jump to life. More than anything right now, he wanted her to keep smiling at him.


Free Copy: I will Gift an eBook copy from Amazon of Wish for the Moon to one visitor who leaves a comment.

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