Ellen Anderson Gholson Glasgow was born into an old and respected Southern colonial family and spent her summers at their historic Jerdone Castle plantation, a setting she used in her writings. She published her first book, The Descendant, at age 22 in 1897. All her many subsequent novels were set in the South, where her reputation was quickly established. Recovery from a suicide attempt in 1918 was to prove the inspiration behind her story of the strong and independent Dorinda Oakley, the heroine of Barren Ground (1925), considered one of the most powerfully moving of Ellen Glasgow’s works. She won the Pulitzer Prize in 1941 for In This Our Life. Ellen Glasgow corresponded with many other literary figures such as Maxwell Perkins, and several collections of her letters have been published. Her autobiography The Woman Within (1954) was published posthumously.