Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Virginia Bell Dabney  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Non-Fiction

Born: 1919 in Chicago, Illinois


Illinois Connection

Virginia was born in Chicago, but as an infant taken to a farm in Virginia where she lived with her mother and sisters while her father stayed in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Published when she was more than seventy years old, Virginia Bell Dabney's book is a memoir of her childhood on a Virginia farm. Once There Was a Farm reveals a rural world dominated by the author's mother, Alice, a strong woman who lived apart from her husband and nurtured three daughters through all manner of hardships.

Published Works Expand for more information

Titles At Your Library

Once There Was a Farm: A Country Childhood Remembered
ISBN: 039458211X

Random House. 1990

Dabney offers an evocative account of growing up on a backwoods Virginia farm during the 1920s and 1930s, the struggle to survive in the face of financial hardship, and the family and friends who surrounded her