Willa Cather had connections to Kearney State College and community

Willa Cather had connections to campus, Kearney community

In her final story – “The Best Years” – author Willa Cather writes about the relationship between a school superintendent, Evangeline Knightly, and a young teacher named Lesley Ferguesson.

Published posthumously, the story details the kindness and wisdom Knightly shares with the teacher before shifting to the future, when the superintendent returns to town to leave flowers on Ferguesson’s grave.

Cather wrote “The Best Years” in 1945 – just two years before her death – drawing heavily on her own life and childhood experiences.

“At the end of her life, she’s reflecting on all of these things, an...


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