Mary O’Hara: “My Heart is in Wyoming”

Could successful screenwriter and socialite Mary O’Hara exchange her glitzy lifestyle for that of a Wyoming ranch wife? Her friends didn’t think so.

But by 1930 Mary had hit her mid-forties and was fed up with her gilded life.

She and her husband traveled from New York to Wyoming in 1930. They lived on the rustic Remount Ranch near Laramie for fifteen years.


Mary O’Hara at the Remount Ranch, UW American Heritage Center, Photofile: O’Hara, Mary.

That first summer Mary came upon the most beautiful sight she had ever seen: a band of wild horses. Observing the horses became a daily routine.


UW American Heritage Center, Photofile: O’Hara, Mary.

Those wild horses inspired her well-known novels: My Friend Flicka, Thunderhead, and Green Grass of Wyoming. The trilogy spans two generations of horses beginning with the wild mare Flicka and ending with Flicka’s colt, Thunderhead.


Mary O’Hara sitting at her typewriter, Remount Ranch, UW American Heritage Center, Photofile: O’Hara, Mary.

All three novels were soon made into popular Hollywood motion pictures.

Mary O’Hara’s papers at the American Heritage Center include personal photographs, scrapbooks, and other interesting items related to her life and career.

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