20 Facts About Louis Bromfield


Louis Bromfield was an American writer and conservationist.


Louis Bromfield won the Pulitzer Prize for the Novel in 1927 for Early Autumn, founded the experimental Malabar Farm near Mansfield, Ohio, and played an important role in the early environmental movement.


From 1915 to 1916, Louis Bromfield struggled to revive the unproductive family farm, an experience he later wrote about bitterly in his autobiographical novel The Farm.


Louis Bromfield served in Section 577 of the US Army Ambulance Corps and was attached to the French infantry.


Louis Bromfield saw major action during the Ludendorff Offensive and the 100 Days Offensive and was briefly captured by the German army in the summer of 1918.


Louis Bromfield found work in New York City as a journalist, critic and publicity manager, among other jobs.


In November 1925, Louis Bromfield moved to Paris, where he became associated with many of the central figures of the Lost Generation, especially Gertrude Stein and Ernest Hemingway.


Louis Bromfield continued to write best-selling novels in the late 1920s and early 1930s, including A Good Woman, The Strange Case of Miss Annie Spraag and The Farm, an autobiographical novel that romanticized his family's agrarian past.


Louis Bromfield worked briefly in Hollywood as a contract screenwriter for Samuel Goldwyn, Jr.


Louis Bromfield learned techniques of intensive gardening from his peasant neighbors in Senlis and formed a close bond with Edith Wharton, who designed the formal gardens at the Pavillon Colombe, her estate in nearby Saint-Brice-Sous-Foret.


Louis Bromfield visited Sir Albert Howard's soil institute in the state of Indore and spent time in Baroda City as a guest of Sayajirao Gaekwad III, the Maharajah of Baroda.


Louis Bromfield's travels informed one of his most critically acclaimed bestsellers, The Rains Came, which was adapted into a popular 1939 film starring Myrna Loy and Tyrone Power.


Louis Bromfield later received the French Legion of Honor for this effort.


In December 1938, Louis Bromfield purchased 600 acres of worn-out farmland near the town of Lucas in Pleasant Valley, Richland County, Ohio.


Louis Bromfield built a 19-room Greek Revival-style farmhouse that he dubbed the Big House.


In 1941, Louis Bromfield became first vice president of the Friends of the Land, a new national volunteer organization allied with the US Soil Conservation Service, that sought to correct the ruinous farming practices that had culminated in the Dust Bowl and other incidents of widespread soil erosion in the 1930s.


Louis Bromfield established Malabar's national reputation in 1945 by hosting the wedding of his good friend Humphrey Bogart to Lauren Bacall.


Yet Louis Bromfield's books continued to be popular with readers; his 1947 novel Colorado sold more than 1 million copies.


Louis Bromfield began writing a series of memoirs about agriculture and the environment, beginning with the best-selling Pleasant Valley.


In 1989, Louis Bromfield was posthumously elected to the Ohio Agricultural Hall of Fame, and in December 1996, the centennial of his birth, the Ohio Department of Agriculture placed a bust of him in the lobby named for him at the department's new headquarters in Reynoldsburg, Ohio.