Wallace Stegner's remarkable portrait of Joe Hill, the man and the legend: from his entrance into the Industrial Workers of the World union, the most militant organization in the history of American labor, to his trial, imprisonment, and final martyrdom.
Blending fact with fiction, Wallace Stegner retells the story of Joe Hill--the Wobbly bard who became the stuff of legend when, in 1915, he was executed for the alleged murder of a Salt Lake City businessman. Organizer, agitator, "Labor's Songster"--a rebel from the skin inwards, with an absolute faith in the One Big Union--Joe Hill fought tirelessly in the frequently violent battles between organized labor and industry. But though songs and stories still vaunt him, and his legend continues to inspire those who feel the injustices he fought against, Joe Hill may not have been a saintly crusader and may have been motivated by impulses darker than the search for justice.
About the Author
Wallace Stegner (1909-1993) was the author of, among other novels, Remembering Laughter, 1937; The Big Rock Candy Mountain, 1943; Joe Hill, 1950; All the Little Live Things, 1967 (Commonwealth Club Gold Medal); A Shooting Star, 1961; Angle of Repose, 1971 (Pulitzer Prize); The Spectator Bird, 1976 (National Book Award, 1977); Recapitulation, 1979; and Crossing to Safety, 1987. His nonfiction includes Beyond the Hundredth Meridian, 1954; Wolf Willow, 1963; The Sound of Mountain Water (essays), 1969; The Uneasy Chair: A Biography of Bernard DeVoto, 1974; and Where the Bluebird Sings to the Lemonade Springs: Living and Writing in the West (1992). Three of his short stories have won O. Henry Prizes, and in 1980 he received the Robert Kirsch Award from the Los Angeles Times for his lifetime literary achievements. His Collected Stories was published in 1990.
"A genuinely powerful novel of labor as it once was in the U.S." --San Francisco Chronicle