Friday, November 4, 2011

Maud E. Uschold (1896-1982)

Poet, Playwright, and Local Historian
Born February 19, 1896, Illinois
Died April 26, 1982, Illinois

Maud Elfrid Uschold wrote a single poem for Weird Tales and many more for other publications. Her work was reprinted as recently as 2010 in the anthology One Big Rain: Poems for a Rainy Day, compiled by Rita Gray. Maud was born on February 19, 1896, in Illinois, a state in which she spent all or most of her life. She graduated from Lacon High School in 1913. From the 1920s through the 1950s, she wrote verse published in American Boy, Commonweal, Davis' Anthology of Newspaper Verse, The Double Dealer, The Improvement Era, Jack and Jill, Kaleidograph, Poetry, and Prairie Schooner. Her poem for Weird Tales was "Old Ghosts" from January 1929.

Maud Uschold enjoyed a second career as a local historian. Her works in that field included Always the Prologue (1967), This Is the Place (1968), The Blue Book of Old Settlers: A Retreat into Memory (1970), Deep Are the Roots (1976), and Marshall County Sketches (1976). She also authored a short play with a long title, The Redemption of a Free State: A Comedy-Drama of Pioneer Days in One Act, Two Scenes. Over the course of her long life, Maud lived in Richland and Lacon, Illinois, her last place of residence. She died on April 26, 1982, at age eighty-six and was buried at Lacon Cemetery.

Maud E. Uschold's Poem in Weird Tales
"Old Ghosts" (Jan. 1929)

Further Reading
Maud Uschold's poetry and non-fiction, though mostly out of print, are still generally available. 

American Boy for July 1935 with a poem by Maud Uschold and a cover by Edgar Franklin Wittmack, who created two covers for Weird Tales in 1943.

Thanks to Randal Everts for Maud Uschold's middle name.
Thanks to Anonymous (comment below) for finding her death date and place of burial.
Text and captions copyright 2011 Terence E. Hanley