Jean Rikhoff

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Jean Rikhoff
Born Chicago, Illinois
Occupation author, editor and teacher
Nationality American
Period books published 1961–2011
Genre historical fiction, children's literature, feminist literature
Notable works Timble Trilogy (Dear Ones All, Voyage In, Voyage Out, and Rites of Passage) and the Butts Landing-Sweetwater trilogy (Buttes Landing, One of the Raymonds, and Sweetwater)
Spouse ?, Mark Branson[1]
Children Allison and Jeffrey Branson

Jean Rikhoff (born 1928)[2] is an American author and editor. She is best known for two trilogies that she wrote: the Timble Trilogy, made up of Dear Ones All, Voyage In, Voyage Out, and Rites of Passage, and the trilogy of the North Country, consisting of Buttes Landing, One of the Raymonds, and The Sweetwater.

Rikhoff received a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship, a Eugene Saxton fellowship in creative writing (1958), and two State University of New York creative writing fellowships.[3][4] Two of her books were selected as book of the month alternates and her autobiography was selected Best Memoir of 2011 by the Adirondack Center for Writing.

Life and work[edit]

Jean Rikhoff was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana. She received her B.A. in English from Mount Holyoke College in 1948 and completed graduate work in English and philosophy at Wesleyan University.[3] Her dissertation was on The Classical Imagery in Christopher Marlowe's Plays.

Rikhoff then left for Europe where she traveled with her first husband and taught for seven years. During this time she wrote her first novel, Dear Ones All, in Seville. Back in the US, she settled with her young daughter in the Adirondack Mountains, first living in Bolton Landing.[3]

In 1954 she established Quixote, a literary magazine, which she also edited.[3] Rikhoff described the magazine as a financial failure, yet continued to publish until 1966.[5] In Quixote she wrote an annual report called "Troubles of a Small Magazine". The collected reports were published by Grosset & Dunlap as the Quixote Anthology, along with selected works from the magazine.

In the meantime, she had started to work with literary agent Barthold Fles,[6] who was of great support to her creative writing.[7] Rikhoff remarried and spent 20 years on a horse farm in West Hebron, where she wrote some of her best known books. In 1983 she co-founded the Loft Press in Glens Falls, for which she served as publisher and editor of the Glens Falls Review.[3] She also worked as an editorial assistant for Gourmet Magazine.[4]

Rikhoff took up teaching again, now at the State University of New York's Adirondack Community College.[8] Among others, she served as faculty advisor to Expressions, the literary magazine of the Adirondack students.[4] At the time of her retirement she was the chair of the English Department at Adirondack College. For her teaching and academic leadership, she won the Adirondack Community College President's Award for Academic Excellence (1990) and State University of New York Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching (1992).


Books written[edit]

Books edited[edit]


  1. ^ "Upstate Area News". The Troy Record. Troy, New York. February 29, 1968. p. 35. Mrs. Inez Palmer introduced the guest speaker, Mrs. Mark Branson of Hebron. Using her maiden name, Jean Rikholf, for her writing, she is currently working on a long novel, set in the Glens Falls area. 
  2. ^ Date information sourced from Library of Congress Authorities data, via corresponding WorldCat Identities linked authority file (LAF) .
  3. ^ a b c d e "Jean Rikhoff" (page 153-198), in Winter KH: The Woman in the Mountain. State University of New York Press, 1989. ISBN 0-88706-886-3.
  4. ^ a b c Rikhoff J: David Smith, I Remember. Glens Falls, New York: Loft Press, 1984, back matter. ISBN 91-29-93001-4.
  5. ^ "Review: Articles of Dissent" (PDF). MANAS Journal. 12 (28): 6–7. 1962-07-11. Retrieved 2011-07-21. This is how Rikhoff describes six years of publishing which ended with financial failure but also with a wealth of experience and a notable store of perseverance: 'We could never pay. We always hoped we could, we always expected we would, but we never did. (As it was, I figure the magazine took between fifteen hundred to two thousand of my own money each year.) But the thing was, we printed. kind of quasi-permanent form, and in the end that was the consolation I had to offer the writers and myself.' 
  6. ^ "Agent Barthold Fles to retire to artists' colony near Amsterdam." Publishers Weekly 228 (1985-11-29): 14.
  7. ^ Rikhoff, Jean (1976). One of the Raymonds. Fawcett Crest. p. 5. ISBN 978-0-449-23090-9. For HELEN TAYLOR, who tried to make me a writer, and JOYCE ENGELSON, who is trying to keep me one, two great editors; and to my agent BARTHOLD FLES, who lent the encouragement and (often) money to keep me going, this book is dedicated in admiration and affection 
  8. ^ Accessed 2008-05-29.
  9. ^ Saal RW: "The Timbles' Troubled Reunion; Dear Ones All." New York Times 1961-02-05: BR40. Accessed 2008-05-14.
  10. ^ Prescott O: "Books of The Times." New York Times 1961-02-24: 27. Accessed 2008-05-14.
  11. ^ Levin M: "New & Novel." New York Times 1973-03-18: 386. Accessed 2008-05-13.
  12. ^ "Children...and Ourselves: The Vision of Reality." Manas 27 (16) (1974-04-17): 10-11. Accessed 2008-05-13.
  13. ^ Frakes JR: "Actions and Passions; The Toll." New York Times 1974-03-24: BR36. Accessed 2008-05-14.
  14. ^ de Usabel FE: "Where Were You in '76? (Book Review)." Library Journal 103 (19) (1978-11-01): 2262. ISSN 0363-0277