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Pettengill, Ma. Ma Pettengill was created by Henry Leon Wilson (Marmaduke Ruggles) and appeared in twenty-three stories in The Saturday Evening Post and two short story collections from 1915 to 1934, beginning with “Ma Pettengill and the Song of Songs” (The Saturday Evening Post, Aug. 28, 1915).

Lysander John “Ma” Pettengill is the owner of the Arrowhead Ranch, somewhere in the American southwest, and as such has to deal with a variety of situations, from the slackdoodle hijinks of her Chinese chef Lew Wee to the slovenly ranch hand Buck Devine to Sandy Sawtelle, the ranch’s “star rider” but also someone who prefers to play music (badly) to riding horses. And, of course, there’s treacherous weather, animals which need tending to, and Ma’s empty-headed daughter Nettie, who is always off chasing after the newest fad, as when she wants to become the leader of the “New Dawn” religious cult. Ma is tall, burly, sunburned, and very capable.

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