Coya Come Home by Gretchen Urnes Beito
Coya has come home again in this intimate biography of Congresswoman Coya Knutson, the Minnesota farmwife who took Washington by storm, published to celebrate her 100th birthday August 22, 2012. Vice-President Walter F. Mondale has written the Foreword to this true story behind the "Coya, Come Home" newspaper headlines that jolted the world. In this updated edition, author Gretchen Urnes Beito reveals for the first time the identity of the mastermind behind those infamous “Coya Come Home” letters.
"COYA COME HOME," a newspaper headline that reverberated around the world in May 1958, referred to the publication of a letter written by Congresswoman Knutson's husband demanding that she abandon her political aspirations and return home to be a full-time housewife. He charged that the 45-year-old Congresswoman and her handsome 29-year-old administrative assistant were having a love affair. As a consequence of "the letter," Coya Knutson lost her Congressional seat; her personal life was in shambles and her political career was permanently destroyed. For many readers it was simply an amusing tale of the hayseed farmer who wanted his pretty blonde wife back home in the kitchen rather than on Capitol Hill. However, it was also a story of political intrigue, domestic violence and the stifling social attitudes of the time.
The publisher will apply all proceeds from the sale of Coya Come Home, on behalf of the Oslo Center for Human Rights-USA, specifically in support of women entering the field of public policy. $20 plus $7 postage.