Welcome to My Website!
Myra Hargrave McIlvain
My website is for sharing the Texas tales I love to tell. I hope you will explore my musings––fact and fiction. Please note that Stein House has been republished with a historic photo of Indianola on its cover. It is the same award-winning book as the earlier edition. I have slowed the pace of my historic Texas blogs. When there is a story that I can't resist sharing, I'll post it on Fridays. FYI: The Doctor's Wife is a prequel to Stein House. And you can follow several of the characters in both books in Waters Plantation.
Texas Tales makes a great gift for those who love 113 good nonfiction stories that's not too long.
A Long Way Home is hot off the press. The story opens on 9/11, but most of the tale takes place on the Texas Rio Grande.
A Kirkus STAR review!
After crippling her husband in an auto crash, Meredith Haggerty endures years of his abuse while harboring a plan to escape when she can make it look as if she died. She grasps her chance at freedom on 9/11 when she survives the fall of the North Tower.
Heading to a new life in Mexico, her seatmate on the bus is Father Jacque Richelieu who convinces her to teach English at his community center on the Texas Rio Grande. She finds a home, but she and the priest discover that they have not found themselves.
These tales trace the Texas story from Cabeza de Vaca who trekked barefoot across the country recording Indian life to empresarios like Stephen F. Austin and Don Martín DeLeón who brought settlers into Mexican Texas. There are legendary characters like Sally Skull who had five husbands and may have killed some of them, and Josiah Wilbarger who was scalped and lived another ten years. Stories of Shanghai Pierce, cattleman extraordinaire, and Tol Barret who drilled Texas’ first oil well long before Spindletop changed the world. The Sanctified Sisters ran a commune for women and millionaire oilman Edgar B. Davis gave away his money as fast as he made it. All these characters—early-day adventurers, Civil War heroes, and latter-day artists and musicians—create the patchwork called Texas.
Amelia Anton’s young pupil dies on a German immigrant ship bound for Texas in 1845. After the death of the child’s mother, Amelia’s employer abandons her. She quickly accepts the marriage proposal of the much-respected shipboard physician, Joseph Stein, only to discover that he is not the husband she expected.
Dr. Stein takes Amelia to the temporary settlement on Matagorda Bay where hundreds of disease-ridden Germans huddle in tents—stranded during the Mexican-American War—waiting for wagons to transport them inland. This story of heartache, betrayal, and business success of Amelia and Dr. Stein is woven into the struggle of the Germans who choose to remain on that barren shell beach and create the burgeoning seaport of Indianola.
Speaking Events & Book Signings
Dec. 10, Austin Woman's Club, Zoom Presentation
Jan. 13-Feb.17, 2021,UT NOVA, "Historic San Antonio," Zoom Talk
May 29, 2021,Lone Star Book Festival, Seguin Cultural Center, Book Signing