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State Historical Society Memoir Receives Multiple Accolades

State Historical Society Memoir Receives Multiple Accolades

“Circling Back Home: A Plainswoman’s Journey” is a finalist in the 2014 WILLA Literary Awards and a nominee in the 2014 Will Rogers Medallion Awards. Written by first-time author Darcy Lipp-Acord, the book has been well received since its publication by the South Dakota State Historical Society in 2013.

In “Circling Back Home,” Lipp-Acord looks to her past to create a life of significance for her family at a time when values of home, family and care of the land seem increasingly absent. She mourns the loss of one child and celebrates the births of others while balancing her own desire to put down roots with her husband’s life as an itinerant ranch hand.

Written over 10 years, Lipp-Acord’s essays compose a picture of endurance and grace as the author addresses her history and finds her way home. Award-winning author Linda M. Hasselstrom contributes a foreword, stating that “‘Circling Back Home’ reflects the life of a ranch woman in all its prismatic variety.”

“Darcy Lipp-Acord has written a great testament to American values and the experience of women on the plains,” said South Dakota State Historical Society Director Jay D. Vogt. “Different than the typical cowboy or cowgirl narrative, her book shares the story of countless women who worked to keep their families together in an unforgiving landscape.”

“Because she writes well and makes us care, it is a joy when Darcy Lipp-Acord can say, ‘I feel like I’ve finally arrived,’” says Susan Schoch, reviewer for Story Circle Book Reviews. “How she gets there makes a fine story … a good one to pass along to a friend.”

The WILLA Literary Award is named in honor of Willa Cather, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author. It is awarded annually for outstanding literature featuring women’s stories set in the West and is chosen by a panel of professional librarians. “Circling Back Home” was named a finalist in the Creative Non-fiction category. “Laura Ingalls Wilder: A Writer’s Life,” also published by the State Historical Society, won in 2008.

In October the winners and ranking for the Will Rogers Medallion Award will be announced at a ceremony in Fort Worth, Texas. “Circling Back Home” was nominated in the Western Biographies and Memoirs category and is the first South Dakota Historical Society Press book to be nominated for a Will Rogers Medallion Award. Originally created to recognize quality works of cowboy poetry that honored the Will Rogers heritage, the award has expanded to include all works of Western literature.

“Circling Back Home” is available for $16.95 plus shipping and tax and can be purchased from most bookstores or ordered directly from the South Dakota Historical Society Press. Visit, call (605) 773-6009 or email

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