The spectacular natural wonder called Big Spring near the Current River is hidden away in Missouri's Ozarks Hills. Hired to do a historical study of the state park at Big Spring, Bonnie Stepenoff also kept a personal journal and created an engaging narrative about hills, hillbillies, poverty, and the landscape making people what they are.
In Big Spring Autumn she weaves the local and natural history of the area into her own story of growing up in the hills of north-eastern Pennsylvania, where there was also great beauty and great poverty. With little sentimentality, Stepenoff pays attention to the parallels in the nature and culture of the Ozarks with her past. She makes a case for preserving this natural beauty and the culture surrounding it for the lessons we can learn.