Archive for September 8th, 2015

Old Yeller: Not Just About a Boy and His Dog

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015
Fred Gipson, writer of "Old Yeller". Memorabilia from Mason, TX Memorial Library.

Fred Gipson, writer of “Old Yeller”. Memorabilia from Mason, TX Memorial Library.

This is Passport to Texas

Old Yeller by Fred Gipson is—at its heart—a story about a boy and his dog. It’s also about our connection with nature. Gipson gives readers a sense of what it was like to live close to the land in Texas’ Hill Country of the 1860s.

07—He’s talking about hunting—sitting quietly. In which, if you haven’t hunted, you sit for hours listening and watching.

Cynthia Pickens wrote about the book and its author for Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine. Through his protagonist, a boy named Travis, Gipson reminds all that nature rewards us when we slow down to enjoy it.

25—To him, it was like a picture show. It was like entertainment. And I don’t think many of us realize that that can be the case. If you go out and sit in nature, and if you sit long enough, you will start to see the creatures and the light in the trees and the water playing over the creeks… It is a form of entertainment. It is lovely and peaceful, and anybody can do that. You can do it in your neighborhood; you can do it in your backyard.

Whether you read it as a child, or have young readers in your home, Pickens says Old Yeller is timeless.

20— I think it’s for any reader, and especially any person who’s interested in the Texas outdoors. I hope it would encourage children to go outside and see nature, because it’s a wondrous place. There’s lots to see if you open your eyes and your ears. And, all parents should give their children a copy of Old Yeller for Christmas [laughs].

Find Cynthia Pickens article that looks back at Old Yeller and Texas author Fred Gipson in the August/September issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine.

For Texas Parks and Wildlife, I’m Cecilia Nasti.