Finding Meridel

Meridel’s words articulate that which is often wordless. She recognizes the intricate evolving layers present at each moment—of permeable body, of soul, of scientific inquiry, social observation, worlds past, and worlds yet to come. She welcomes this immense universe into the intimate reality of her own life with unconditional gratitude, with curiosity, with love.
Sandy Spieler, illustrator of “Winter Prairie Woman” by Meridel LeSueur

Books in Print

Chanticleer of Wilderness Road by Meridel LeSueur, Holy Cow! Press

The Girl by Meridel LeSueur, West End Press

Little Brother of the Wilderness: The Story of Johnny Appleseed by Meridel LeSueur, Holy Cow! Press

Nancy Hanks of Wilderness Road: A Story of Abraham Lincoln’s Mother by Meridel LeSueur, Holy Cow!  Press

North Star Country by Meridel LeSueur, University of Minnesota Press

Ripening, Selected Work, Second Edition, Feminist Press

The River Road: A Story of Abraham Lincoln by Meridel LeSueur, Holy Cow! Press

Salute to Spring by Meridel LeSueur, International Publishers

Sparrow Hawk by Meridel LeSueur, Holy Cow! Press


My People Are My Home by the Twin Cities Women’s Film Collective at

In 1976, the young women in the Twin Cities Women’s Film Collective gathered material for Meridel’s own history of the Midwest—her ideas about love for the earth and compassion for one other. Her voice and her beautiful words honor indigenous cultures and the radical peace and justice movements of the 20th century. “The people,” Meridel wrote, “are a story that never ends.”


MNopedia is an online encyclopedia about Minnesota developed by the Minnesota Historical Society (MNHS) and its partners. It is a free, curated, and authoritative resource about our state. All of the articles are prepared by historians, consulting experts, professional writers, and others who have been vetted by MNHS. Here is their link to Meridel LeSueur:

Minnesota Historical Society

The Meridel LeSueur papers include correspondence, literary journals, copies of published writings, published and unpublished manuscripts and manuscript fragments, publicity materials, radical publications, news clippings, photographs, and other miscellaneous materials documenting the life and career of LeSueur, an actress, writer, journalist, feminist, and radical political activist. Also included in the collection are audio recordings made by LeSueur containing interviews, music, and conversations with family and friends. In addition, the collection includes papers of LeSueur’s father, William Winston Wharton, her mother and step-father, Marian and Arthur LeSueur, and her daughters, Deborah LeSueur and Rachel Tilsen, and their families.

The correspondence, covering over seventy years of LeSueur’s life, contains letters from LeSueur’s friends, publishers, admirers, and family, particularly her daughters Rachel and Deborah. There is much information on family matters, her literary progress, and political affairs. The journals, which Le Sueur kept nearly her entire life, include 133 volumes dating from her teenage years through the early 1990s and were the wellspring of much of her writing. Manuscripts in the collection include a sampling of the huge amounts of material sent to Meridel by other aspiring writers in addition to her own work, both published and unpublished. Publications, news clippings, programs, and other publicity provide information on LeSueur’s career and activities, and on the many political and literary organizations of interest to her.

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