The greatest conquerors do not ride horses and wield swords; picture neither do they acquire victories by any physical force. The 10-1-2009 magnanimous souls who were the patterns for the characters 339 of this story overcame daunting obstacles by a higher power; then celebrated their victories in song. The 1930s and early 1940s were the meanest of hard times. People everywhere were desperate for a thread of hope. After the Great Depression began to lift from some areas, its effects were still strangling the Ozarks which was considered to be among the most desperate regions of the nation. Yet, people like the Harps and Boyers, their young families and neighbors, through faith, were enabled to find and maintain hope. The entire community pulled together to lovingly encourage and help all its members. Not only did they survive their terrible hardship; they lived with joy and a song, and they bestowed priceless treasures upon their progeny. They were "more than conquerors through Him that loved us." The story that Geneva Emerson presents of her childhood in the Ozark foothills during the depression is reminiscent of those occasionally heard from the old timers. However, as this older generation disappears, we are losing the history of the struggles that occurred with the poverty and hard labor in this area just to find daily survival. We need to retain as much of this history as possible to remind us of what it took to populate and develop this frontier Dr. Earl Belcher, Historian
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