Audiobook: Winning of Barbara Worth

Winning of Barbara Worth cover

Winning of Barbara Worth

1 - Into the Infinite Long Ago


Audiobooks Genres



This is a fairly substantial western, written in 1911 by Harold Bell Wright, then a major bestselling author. (His best-known novel is “The Shepherd of the Hills”) Strangely, the winning of Barbara Worth is a small part of the story, though she is one of the main characters. She was a foundling, discovered with her dying mother in the desert. She takes the name of her adopted father, Jefferson Worth. He is perhaps the main character; he is a capitalist, with very humanitarian qualities. He is pitted against other capitalists, ones with little concern for the good of the settlers attracted to the desert they are developing. The story concerns the efforts to reclaim the desert (Jaquinn Valley), by diverting waters of the Colorado River into canals that will make the land suitable for crops and cities. (Wright could not possibly have imagined the low water level of the Colorado River of today.) Wright wrote about capitalism vs. labor in several of his novels, and he does here. He often showed biased support for labor; however, he also showed a real effort to understand the role of each. In his time there were almost no regulations on capitalists, and there was, in fact, great abuses by the barons. This conflict is the heart of the story. But it is also a story of the loyalty of several employees of Jefferson Worth–loyalty, and love toward Worth, and also toward his adopted daughter. (A silent film of the book was Gary Cooper’s first movie.). There are many exciting elements in the story: floods, betrayals, business chicanery, and romance. All things considered; the book holds up well.(Summary by Bob Rollins)

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