Minnesota Historical Society

Frederick Manfred: A Daughter Remembers

$ 15.95

The story of a father and a daughter—and the death of a man who seemed bigger than life. 

In this poignant memoir, poet-novelist Freya Manfred recounts the artistic life and death of her father, the prolific and highly regarded author Frederick Manfred. Using family letters and passages from her father’s novels as well as her own memories, she explores their powerful personal and literary relationship, which spanned nearly five decades.

Freya Manfred describes what it meant to be the daughter of a strong-willed man who was dedicated, sometimes at great cost, to a creative life. Her story starts with the tender power and beauty of his funeral in 1994, then moves back to a clear-eyed and often humorous depiction of their home life, which was shaped by her father’s insistence on the quiet and solitude necessary for his writing. She remembers the shift in their relationship as her literary career blossomed and he added the roles of mentor and friend. Finally, she shares frank and loving details of her family’s struggle to help her father die well.


FREYA MANFRED is the author of three volumes of poetry, as well as poems in anthologies and reviews. She also writes screenplays, children’s stories, and novels and teaches writing.


  • By: Freya Manfred
  • Format: Paper, 224 pp., 16 b&w illustrations, 51/4 x 8
  • Publisher: MNHS Press
  • Product ##: 9780873513722




Praise for Frederick Manfred:


“This is a very moving book. We often hear careful accounts of the life of an artist, but seldom the death of an artist. Freya’s faithfulness to that transition is unusual and powerful.”--Robert Bly


“This rare book about the intimacy between a father and his daughter is notable for its affection, sensitivity, generosity, and gratitude. In a larger sense it is the revealing examination of an American writer’s lifelong struggle with his material and with his cultural fate.”--Philip Roth

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