Barbara Murray Holland, 1933 - 2010

portrait of Barbara Holland
Photo by Mel Crown

Born: 5 April 1933, Washington City
Died: 7 September 2010, Bluemont, Virginia

Born Barbara Murray, her parents divorced and her mother married Thomas Holland, who Barbara feared and disliked. She won the National Scholastic poetry competition in consecutive years, the first junior to win and the first to repeat. She moved to Philadelphia and worked as an advertising copy writer and began writing articles and short fiction for magazines. She wrote history, including Hail to the Chiefs (1990) on the presidents and They Went Whistling (2001) on famous women, but she is largely remembered for her defence of small vices, notably The Joy of Drinking (2007) which she said was to protest the rise of "broccoli, exercise, and Starbucks" in a Washington Post interview. Her three marriages ended in divorce, she moved to a cabin at Bluemont, Virginia in 1993. She enjoyed drinking, also smoking: she died at home of lung cancer.

Biography from Wikipedia and New York Times obituary

Barbara Holland quotes:

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