• Sworn in as a state representative.
If there’s an over-arching theme, it is not coming West in a physical sense, but in the perseverance to make something of myself in a new place, time and generation, apart from my roots in Maine and elsewhere “out East.” It has not been a perfect journey. It took me many years to find who I was as a journalist, community publisher, civic leader and now public official.

Spirit of Place

also on Amazon.com

Spirit of Place: Southern Idaho Values Across Generations. By Stephen Hartgen. September 2020. 168 pages. Softcover. ISBN-13 978-0945648505. Price $16.95.

In Tradition & Progress: Southern Idaho’s Growth Since 1990, (Ridenbaugh Press, 2019), we explore how recent economic growth has impacted Southern Idaho cultural values. We cover topics like individualism, diversity and isolation, conservative roots, faith, egalitarian land ownership, politics and the arts.

Here, we open a different exploration; why some born or raised here chose to stay or return, while others left. We look at the power of memory, both within the individual and the community.

We examine why some, brought here by work or recreation or some other facet of their lives, create a delicate nest of mementos, of small fibers and bits of wind-blown cottonwood seed and scraps of bark and thistle, and thus become entwined in the community in ways they never expected, which then becomes their blessed home.

Sample chapter