This Goodly Land

Julia Truitt Yenni (February 21, 1913–May 12, 2000)

Other Names Used

Alabama Connections

Selected Works

Biographical Information

Julia Truitt Yenni was born in Birmingham, Ala. Her family moved to Covington, La., when she was young but returned to Birmingham later. Yenni graduated from high school at age fifteen and worked for a year in Birmingham before enrolling at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tenn. In 1930, Yenni left the University and moved to New York City where her family later joined her. In New York, Yenni worked as a secretary and took night classes at Columbia University. She began writing at this time. In 1936, Yenni married and moved with her husband to Chicago. A few years later, the couple moved back to New York.

Yenni’s first three novels were published while she was living in Chicago and New York. She used a family name, Truitt, as part of her pen name to honor her grandmother and mother who had been writers themselves. In 1944, Yenni moved with her husband and children to Pine Grove, a small town in Pennsylvania. Although her last novel was published in 1951, Yenni continued to write, publishing several articles and stories in popular women’s magazines. She also wrote a weekly column for the Pine Grove newspaper, The Press Herald, from the mid-1960s until she left Pine Grove in 1983. At that time, Yenni and her husband moved to Cambridge, Mass., to be closer to their grown children. She was still living there at the time of her death in 2000.

Interests and Themes

Julia Truitt Yenni’s novels feature young women struggling to find a balance between personal freedom and the conventions of society.

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Last updated on May 30, 2008.

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