Contact Us

Would you like to hear how two sisters managed to write a book together?   Or how we developed the ideas for Plank Road Summer?   Would your class like to hear about the mistakes we made and the things we learned while writing a novel?

As our work schedules permit, we will be available for book signings, book talks, classroom presentations,  or writing workshops.

Classroom presentations could be adapted for mid-elementary to high school levels.  Topics include  The Writing Process,  Plank Road Days,  The Underground Railroad,  Researching Wisconsin History,  and related subjects.

We can also shape adult forums and workshops to fit your audience interest.

Click here to send us a message.


18 thoughts on “Contact Us

  1. sherri nord

    Hi Hilda,
    I’ve just posted a link to this site on our Valparaiso University “New Ideas in Midwest Literature” course blog, hosted by Prof. Arvid Sponberg.
    Can’t wait to get your book!
    Sherri Nord

  2. Marcia Wilks

    Can’t wait to read the book!!! Sounds like it will fit in perfect with our immigration unit. Congrats!

  3. Sonya Brousil

    I just finished PRS, and loved it! Your sister, Sam Meinke, is/was my boy’s pre-school teacher, so I bought my copy from her. I can’t say how much I loved the book. I read it in one day. Yes I did! I would love to see a sequel. Did Matilda marry Mr. Banvard? What else happened to Katie and Florence?? I would love to know.

    My own family has quite a history in Alabama and was invovled in the “Free State of Winston” pulling away from the Confederacy. My own Great-great-Grandfather was involved and was the circuit court clerk in 1861.

    Anyway, loved the book, want to see more books, keep writing! Thanks so much!

    • Hilda Demuth-Lutze

      Thanks for the encouragement, Sonya. I’d never heard of the “Free State of Winston.” Like the plank road era for us, that part of your family’s history may be a story waiting to be told.

  4. Jan Ruge

    So proud of you and your sister’s book and where it will also be used in the classroom and homeschool setting. Hope we’ll see you back in Hospice choir when things slow down for you. Where is your next book signing? Maybe we can come and sing at your signing! Just kidding but I’d rather see you personally than order it on line. I have sent your website to friends. Keep up the great work.

  5. Holly Luerssen

    What a great Historical Fiction book! Having grown up in Racine County and having been a part of the Racine County Fair for many years, I really enjoyed it. Once I started reading about the girls and Miz Hannah’s travels in the Underground Railroad, I realized I couldn’t put the book down.

    As a 4th grade teacher that teaches Wisconsin History, I can’t wait to get a classroom set of the books and bring a part of Racine County to the northwoods of Wisconsin.

    I also hope to use the teacher resources that are on line. It’s awesome that you are providing many ideas for teachers to use.

    Any chance for another book….a series???

    • Hilda Demuth-Lutze

      Thanks for the thumbs up, Holly. Emy and I are always pleased to get positive responses from teachers, and we’d love to hear how the PRS classroom activities go for your fourth graders.

      We’re looking forward to an appearance at the Racine County Fair, where we showed 4-H lambs many years ago, and yes, we do have a sequel in the works. . .

  6. Toni Martin

    The Plank Road Summer Tent at the Racine Co. Fair was Great! I have just started reading the book. I love reading any historical fiction. Great Job!!

  7. Jill Boyd

    Where can I get the cinnimon twist recipe; I’ve looked all over the site and cannot find one.

    • Emily Demuth Ishida

      Ahh–the famous Mather Inn cinnamon twists. I confess that the doughnuts are a product of our imagination, and not a recipe that we have used for years.

      When it came time for our book launch, we searched for an old Yorkville pioneer doughnut recipe so that a local bakery could make some for our party. However, when a test batch was made, they didn’t taste very good. So the Country Rose Bakery made us delicious yeast cinnamon twists using their own recipe.

      However, we know that twists are a type of doughnut that would have been made by pioneers. Our understanding is that when the dough was twisted, the doughnut would have cooked through without having to flip it over in the oil. Anything that made it easier to cook for a crowd would have been welcome at the Mather Inn.

      There is a doughnut recipe in the Little House Cookbook that actually talks about twisting the dough and sprinkling it with cinnamon. I will drop a link into our Resource page so that you can access it there and create your own Mather Inn/Plank Road cinnamon twists.

  8. Lynn Eckert Roob

    Hilda and Emily,

    Just finished your wonderful book. After seeing you at the Reclaiming Our Heritage event last May, I began to read your book. I’m a bit embarrassed to say, but before I knew it, it was March and I still hadn’t finished. With all that raising a family comes with, I just wasn’t able to dedicate the time to reading for pleasure.

    My mom and I happened to stop in the Country Rose Cafe. We saw your book displayed at the counter which brought it back to the forefront of my mind. I wish I would have found the time and finished it back in May! It is such a smooth read and one of those books you just don’t want to put down (but have to because, well, you know, the kids).

    I remember from our high school days always thinking “Hilda will someday write and publish a book”. I didn’t realize Emily had the same aspirations. I am so…… thrilled for you both! Along with being writers, you are also an inspiration to all moms, whatever our goals and dreams may be!

    I did purchase your book at Country Rose Cafe that day and will give it to my kids’ library at school and spread the word, in my little world, of this excellent book.

    Thank you for giving us a wonderful book for kids and adults to enjoy and learn some history at the same time.

    This success could not have happened to two more down to earth, nicer people.


  9. Jean Haas Fude

    Hi Hilda-

    I’ve meant to write so many times. I finished your book the night I got it (your birthday). I loved it. It was a good story but, as I’m sure you’re aware, your story is set in my childhood playground too. It was wonderful to remember things, places, friends whom I don’t spend enough time to enjoy. Thanks!! Jean

  10. Jonathan Krutz

    Emily and Hilda: When I saw you wrote a book I had to pop on Amazon and order it. Great read. My 14 year old daughter enjoyed it, too, though she thought it would be better for someone a little younger. Looks like you have a sequel out already. We’ll look forward to reading it.



    • Emily Demuth Ishida

      Glad you enjoyed it, Jon. Our sequel isn’t out yet, but we’re working on another revision now.

      • rhonda

        When do you hope to put out the sequel?

      • Emily Demuth Ishida

        It is wonderful to know that someone is waiting for the sequel. This is a writer’s dream. We are working on another revision, but would love to have it out within the next year.

  11. rhonda

    i live on plank road and have all my life. even though it is in the childrens section i told my sister about it also. she is much older and remembers many more of the rochester memories.

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