Indiana is known for a lot of amazing things — great steakhouses, basketball, an adorable First Dog named Henry, and much more.
But Indiana has also filled a few shelves when it comes to great American literature. These Hoosier writers know how to tell a story!
Indiana is a cultural center with a deep literary tradition, and we want to celebrate that tradition with our One Indiana list this week. We had our crew pick out their all-time favorite Hoosier writers — check out our list!
- Sarah T. Bolton – Considered an unofficial poet laureate of Indiana, Bolton also played a crucial role in fighting for women’s property rights in Indiana’s constitution. If you want to read a beautiful tribute to our state, check out one of her best-known poems, “Indiana.”
- John Green – Best known for The Fault in Our Stars set in Indianapolis (which debuted at number one on the New York Times bestseller list!), Green is another proud literary son of Indiana. In 2014, he was even included as one of Time’s 100 most influential people in the entire world!
- Gene Stratton Porter – As well as writing several best-selling novels that were adapted into films, Porter was a leading conservationist who fought to preserve much of the beautiful Indiana outdoors we enjoy today. If you want to learn more, you can visit one of her historic homes in Indiana!
- Ernie Pyle – One of the most famous American war correspondents in history, Pyle won a Pulitzer Prize for his first-person wartime reporting in both the European and Pacific theatres. Tragically, Pyle was killed by enemy fire during the Battle of Okinawa. As President Truman said, “He deserves the gratitude of all his countrymen.”
- James Whitcomb Riley – Who could forget the “Hoosier Poet?” Riley helped to usher in the Golden Age of Indiana Literature and was a crucial part of establishing our unique cultural identity.
- Booth Tarkington – One of only four novelists in history to win the Pulitzer Prize for fiction multiple times, Tarkington was once considered America’s greatest living author. He’s a true Hoosier — even serving one term in the Indiana House of Representatives!
- Kurt Vonnegut – Maybe the most famous of all Hoosier authors, Vonnegut secured his place in literary history with Slaughterhouse-Five — one of the most compelling anti-war novels ever written.
- Lew Wallace – A man of many talents, Wallace was a general in the Union Army and governor of the New Mexico Territory as well as a best-selling author. His most famous novel “Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ,” was one of the most influential books of the 19th century.
That’s our list for this week. Thank you for reading.
-Your Holcomb Crew