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Books about The Polio Experience


Denecke, Jean. (2008). Edited by Kris Gruenawald and Keith Storey. Walking Isn't Everything: An Account of the Life of Jean Denecke. Crystal Dreams Publishing, Ontario, Canada. ISBN 13-9781591461920 pbk; also available in several ebook options and pdf format.

Dolislager, Phyllis Porter. (2008). Who Hit the Down Button: Life with a Chronic Illness or Disability. iUniverse, Bloomington, IN. ISBN 978-1-4401-0875-4 (pbk); ISBN 978-1-4401-0876-1 (ebk). To purchase, visit

Kloepping, Kent. (2009). The Upside of the Downside: Journeys with a Companion Called Polio. Available at (Product 158736641X.).

cover of A Summer Without Children

A Summer Without Children: An Oral History of Wythe County, Virginia's 1950 Polio Epidemic was produced for the opening of an exhibit at the Thomas J. Boyd Museum, Wytheville, Virginia, about "the worst per capita polio outbreak in the US." The small town of Wytheville (population 5,550) accounted for 185 cases of polio that summer. For more information, contact The Museum Shop, 115 West Spiller Street Wytheville, Virginia 24382 (276-223-3457).

cover of Walking Fingers showing images of young girl with crutchesAitken, Sally, D'Orazio, Helen, and Valin, Stewart (Eds.) (2004). Walking Fingers: The Story of Polio and Those Who Lived It. 225 pp. Montreal, Canada: Vehicule Press (

Baker, Beryl K. (2002). Nana Needs a Nap. (ISBN 0-9731136-0-X).

cover of Love, War & Polio: The Life and Times of Young Bill PorteousBazzett, Timothy James. (2008). Love, War & Polio: The Life and Times of Young Bill Porteous. Bazzett combines research with original letters, interviews, personal recollections and anecdotes to tell polio survivor Bill Porteous’s story. It is a homespun history lesson about the nearly forgotten polio plague years and our fathers’ and grandfathers’ war. The appendix lists all the polio patients and staff who spent time at the Army and Naval General Hospital (A&NGH), Hot Springs, Arkansas, in the late 1940s. (ISBN 978-0-9771119-3-0,

Carter, Nancy Baldwin. (2002). Snapshots: Polio Survivors Remember. Omaha, Nebraska: NPSA Press (PO Box 45139, Omaha, NE 68145).

cover of Dancing with KatyaChaconas, Dori. (2006). Dancing with Katya. Peachtree Publishers (, 800-241-0113). ISBN 1-56145-376-5; $16.95, hardcover, 32 pp.

Creurer, Michael. (2004). The Red Brick Birdcage. (SFC Inc., Box 5664, Victoria, BC, V8R 6S4, Canada, 250-598-7914 fax). ISBN 0-9683489-6-3, $18.00 USD.

cover of Behind Enemy LinesCurey Dille, Jeane L. (2005). Polio: A Dose of the Refiner's Fire - Surviving Polio. Bloomington, Indiana: AuthorHouse, 800-839-8640, ISBN 9781420803938, softcover, $10.25 plus s&h.

Durand, John. (2005). Behind Enemy Lines: A Memoir. ISBN 0-9743783-2-1; $15.95, softcover, 312 pp. Puzzlebox Press (

Finger, Anne. (2006). Elegy for a Disease: A Personal and Cultural History of Polio. New York: St. Martin's Press ( ISBN 0-312-34757-X, hardcover, 289 pp., $25.95 USA, $34.95 Canada.

cover image of Twin Voices: A Memoir of Polio, the Forgotten KillerFlood Nichols, Janice. (2007). Twin Voices: A Memoir of Polio, the Forgotten Killer.  ISBN 978-0-595-43316-2; softcover, 6 x 9, 260 pp., $20.95 USA, iUniverse ( Visit for additional information.

Hankins, Gerald W. (2004). Rolling On: The Story of the Amazing Gary McPherson. Alberta, Canada: University of Alberta Press. ISBN 0-88864-405-1, $24.95 paper, 216 pp.

book cover of Polio and usHartnett, Nuala (Editor) (2007). Polio and us. 96-pg book featuring personal stories of 29 polio survivors in Ireland. A legacy initiative of Post Polio Support Group, the book's well-chosen photographs add to the experience. Will soon be downloadable free of charge from

cover of 101 Accessible Vacations showing ship on waterHarrington, Candy B. (2008). 101 Accessible Vacations: Travel Ideas for Wheelers and Slow Walkers (ISBN 1932603433) published by Demos Medical Publishing, New York. $24.95 and available online, 352 pp, softcover, contains destination information about over 101 cities in the US. Includes sections ranging from Road Trips and The Great Outdoors to Historic Haunts and Cruisin'.

Hostetter, Joyce Moyer. (2006). Blue. ISBN 1-59078-389-1, $16.95, hardcover 5.5 x 8.25, 200 pp., Asheville, NC: Calkins Creek Books (828-236-5940).

cover of Adelia: Simple Person, Silent Teacher, Polio SurvivorHuff, Carol. (2007). Adelia: Simple Person, Silent Teacher, Polio Survivor is a biography of a survivor who died in 1971 at age 28. The 116-pp. $13.95 from and oline booksellers. International orders, call 00-1-402-323-7800.

cover of Small Steps: The Year I Got PolioKehret, Peg. (2006). Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio (10th Anniversary Edition). Morton Grove, Illinois: Albert Whitman & Company ( ISBN 0-8075-7459-7, $15.95 hardcover, 184 pp.

Malizia, Alan M. (2009). A View from the Quiet Corner: The Reflections of a Novice Poet. AuthorHouse, 1663 Liberty Drive, Ste 200, Bloomington, IN 47403, 800-839-8640, ISBN 978-1-4389-9108-5 (sc).

cover of The Little Red ChairMalizia, Alan M. (2004). The Little Red Chair. AuthorHouse, 1663 Liberty Drive, Ste 200, Bloomington, IN 47403, 800-839-8640, ISBN 1-4140-2837-7, $12.50 USD.

cover of Breath: Life in the Rhythm of an Iron LungMason, Martha. (2003). Breath: Life in the Rhythm of an Iron Lung. Asheboro, North Carolina: Down Home Press (PO Box 4126, Asheboro, NC 27204). ISBN 1-878086-95-2.

Mather-Brown, Bill (with Tinsley Beck). (2002). The Fight in the Dog. T. Beck: Beckenham, West Australia.,

McPherson, Gary. (2000). With Every Breath I Take. Laurie Greenwood's Volume II: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Visit cover of The Handicap Race showing a leg brace

cover of Broken YesterdaysMeagher, Joseph W. (2003).

Broken Yesterdays. Philadelphia, PA: Xlibris Corporation ( ISBN 1-4010-7874-5.

Moore, Philip, in conversation with Ronald Rivers-Moore. (2006). The Handicap Race. Serendipity, first floor, 37/39 Victoria Road, Darlington, DL1 5SF England. ISBN 1 84394 182 1. Price 9.95 pounds.

Neumann, Roger, with contributions by Dave PHI website (2008). Diamond in the Rough: The Dave Clark Story is a self-published book (iUniverse) and available at and at other online booksellers. Clark works parttime as a scout for the Baltimore Orioles, the team that gave him a chance to fulfill his dream to play professional baseball.

cover of the Cutter IncidentOffitt, MD, Paul. (2005).The Cutter Incident: How America's First Polio Vaccine Led to the Growing Vaccine Crisis. ISBN 0-300-10864-8; $27.50 hardcover, 240 pages, 25 black and white illustrations. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press (

Oshinsky, David. (2005). Polio: An American Story. Oxford University Press ( ISBN 0-195152948, $30 USD.

cover of Polio MemoriesPolio Memories (Second Edition). Canada: Post-Polio Awareness & Support Society of British Columbia (, 250-477-8244). Spiral-bound book, $15.00 USD plus shipping & handling of $7.80-USA; $4.20-Canada).

Poore, Carol. (2007). Disability in Twentieth-Century German Culture (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press). Exploration of disability in Germany during this tumultuous century. Available from bookstores, the University of Michigan Press (, or

cover of the Seven Wheelchairs: A Life beyond PolioPresley, Gary (2008). Seven Wheelchairs: A Life beyond Polio (University of Iowa Press). Memoir of polio survivor/ventilator user. Cloth-bound book for $25.95 from bookstores or the publisher at 800-621-2736 or;

Schulenberg, Lawrence J. (2004). To Catch the Snowflakes: Memoir of a Polio Survivor, an Adoptive Parent, a High School Principal, and a Father of an Addict. Frederick, MD: PublishAmerica. ( ISBN 1-4137-0749-1.

Scott, Ralph M. (2004). I'd offer you my seat ... but it's taken. Niles, MI: John N. Clayton, Does God Exist? (1555 Echo Valley Dr, Niles, MI 49120,

Serotte, B. (2006). In The Fortune Teller's Kiss. 220 pp. cloth, 6x9, 16 photographs, ISBN 0-8032-4326-X/978-0-4326-2, $26.95/UK £20.50, University of Nebraska Press.

cover of The Death of a Disease: A History of the Eradication of PoliomyelitisSeytre, B. & Shaffer, M. (2005). The Death of a Disease: A History of the cover of With Reckless Abandon showing Capt Sharp smiling on his boatEradication of Poliomyelitis. ISBN-13: 978-0-8135-3676-7 (hardcover); ISBN-13: 978-0-8135-3677-4; ($22.95 paperbk., 161 pgs.). New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press (

Sharp, Capt. Jim. (2007). With Reckless Abandon: Memoirs of a Boat-Obsessed Life. Devereux Books, Marblehead, MA: 781-631-3055,

Shell, Marc. (2005). Polio and Its Aftermath: The Paralysis of Culture. Harvard University Press ( (ISBN 0-674-01315-8, 336 pp., 25 halftones, $35 USD).

cover of Warm Springs: Traces of a Childhood at FDR's Polio HavenShreve, Susan Richards (2007). Warm Springs: Traces of a Childhood at FDR's Polio Haven. Published by Houghton Mifflin, the 215-page book has received considerable public attention and rave reviews. Lists for $24 USD.

cover of Polio VoicesSilver, Julie K., and Wilson, Daniel J. (2007). Polio Voices: An Oral History from the American Polio Epidemics and Worldwide Eradication Efforts. Praeger Publishers, Westport, Connecticut. $39.95-hardcover, ISBN 0-275-99492-9, 192-pages, available online.

Williams, Daniel R. (2002). Keep Smiling and Never Give Up! ( ISBN 1-4033-2989-3. Royalties donated to PHI.

cover of Living with PolioWilson, Daniel J. (2005). Living with Polio: The Epidemic and Its Survivors. Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press ( ISBN 0-226-90103-3, 300+ pp, 10 halftones, $29 USD.

to 50 Years of Miracles and AdventuresYoudath, Raymond. (2006). 50 Years of Miracles and Adventures. PublishAmerica ( ISBN 1-4241-2875-7; $16.95, softcover, 202 pp.1990s


Beisser, Arnold R. (1990). A Graceful Passage: Notes on the Freedom to Live or Die. Doubleday: New York, NY. ISBN 0-385-26766-5. First Edition.

Beisser, Arnold R. (1991). The Only Gift: Thoughts on the Meaning of Friends and Friendship. Doubleday: New York, NY, March. ISBN 0-385-41621-0.

Black, Kathryn. (1996). In the Shadow of Polio: A Personal and Social History. Arizona: Addison-Wesley Publishing Co.. ISBN 0-201-40739-6.

Butterworth, Karen P., ed. (1994). Mind Over Muscle: Surviving Polio in New Zealand. Dunmore Press, Ltd.: Victoria, New Zealand. ISBN 0-86469-211-0.

Carter, Nancy Baldwin. (1992). Of Myths and Chicken Feet: A Polio Survivor Looks at Survival. NPSA Press: Omaha, NE.

Daniel, Thomas M. and Robbins, Frederick C., eds. (1997). Polio. Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press. ISBN 1-878822-90-x.

Gallagher, Hugh G. (1998). Black Bird Fly Away: Disabled in an Able-bodied World. Arlington, VA: Vandamere Press. ISBN 0-918339-44-8)

Gould, Tony. (1995). A Summer Plague: Polio and Its Survivors. Yale University Press: New Haven, CT. ISBN 0-300-06292-3.

Hall, Robert F. (1990). Through the Storm: A Polio Story. North Star Press of Saint Cloud, Inc.: Saint Cloud, MN. ISBN 0-87839-059-6.

Hawksford, Diane Zemke. (1997). Polio: A Special Ride? Self-published: Minnetonka, Minnesota. ISBN 1-891421-00-X.

Hayes, Opal Marie. (1993). Love (collection of poems). Self-published: Clinton, TN.

Herndon, Sylvia. (1990). Surviving It All: The Polio Story. Arkansas League of Polio Survivors: Little Rock, AR.

Jordan, Kevin E. (1995). Treatment and Condition Remain Unchanged. Carlton Press Corp.: New York, NY. ISBN 0-8062-4959-5.

Kehret, Peg. (1996). Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio. Albert Whitman and Co.: Morton Grove, IL. ISBN 0-8075-7457-0.

Kelepis, George. (1994). Implications of Life and Other Stories. Vantage Press: New York, NY. ISBN 0-533-11021-1.

Kriegel, Leonard. (1998). Flying Solo: Reimagining Manhood, Courage, and Loss. Ballentine: Landham, NY. ISBN 0-80707-230-3.

Malone, Millie. (1999). Hot Water, Orange Juice and Kids and More Hot Water! Two Sisters Desktop Publishing. Morris Publishing: Kearney, NE (800-650-7888).

Mauro, Robert. (1998). The Landscape of My Disability (collection of poems). Lemonade Factory: Berkeley, CA. ISBN 1-891420-05-4.

Mee, Charles. (1999). A Nearly Normal Life. Little, Brown and Company: New York, NY. ISBN 0-316-55852-4.

Nudelman, Dorothea, and David Willingham. (1994). Healing the Blues: Drug-Free Psychotherapy for Depression. The Boxwood Press: Pacific Grove, CA. ISBN 0-940168-31-6.

Opie, June. (1996). Over My Dead Body: Forty Years On. Reed Books: Auckland, New Zealand. ISBN 0-7900-0488-7.

Rogers, Naomi. (1992). Dirt and Disease: Polio before FDR. Rutgers University Press: New Brunswick, NJ. ISBN 0-1835-1785-00.

Sass, Edmund J. with George Gottfried and Anthony Sorem. (1996). Polio's Legacy: An Oral History. University Press of America, Inc. Lanham, MD. SBN 0-7618-0143-X).

Schoneman, LaVonne. (1989, 1990, 1992, 1993). How to Cope Series – Practical Tips for Polio Survivors, More Practical Tips for Polio Survivors, More Practical Choices for Polio Survivors, and More Practical Choices for Polio Survivors and Others. Self-published: Seattle, WA.

Sink, Alice E. (1998). The Grit Behind The Miracle. University Press of America: Lanham, New York. ISBN 0-7618-1086-2.

Smith, Jane S. (1990). Patenting the Sun: Polio and the Salk Vaccine. William Morrow & Co., Inc.: New York, NY. ISBN 0-688-09494-5.

Syll, Monita Imbert. (1992). Victors All. Authors Unlimited: Los Angeles, CA. ISBN 1-55666-071-5.

Wikholm, Marion S. (1997). Bitter or Better, It's Up to You. Masterpiece Productions: Metairie, LA. ISBN 0-96538-457-8.

Woods, Regina. (1994). Tales from Inside the Iron Lung (and How I Got Out of It). University of Pennsylvania Press: Philadelphia, PA. ISBN 0-8122-1506-0.


Alexander, Marc. (1980). The Dance Goes On: The Life and Art of Elizabeth Twistington Higgins. Leader Books: Kingsley, Hampshire, England. ISBN 0-907159-00-1.

Beisser, Arnold R. (1989). Flying without Wings: Personal Reflections on Being Disabled. Doubleday: New York, NY. ISBN 0-385-24770-2.

Drescher, Elfrieda D. (1987). Sufficient Grace. Living Flame Press: Hauppauge, NY. SBN 0-914544-66-7).

King, Audrey J. (1987). There's Lint in Your Bellybutton! Canadian Rehabilitation Council for the Disabled: Toronto, Canada. ISBN 0-86500-026-3.

McLaughlin, Ann L. (1989). Lightning in July. John Daniel: Santa Barbara, CA. ISBN 0-936784-72-5.

O'Brien, Patricia I. (1988). I Have Seen and Touched and Tasted Life. Self-published.

Rehabilitation into Independent Living: The 30th anniversary issue of Rehabilitation Gazette. (1988). Gazette International Networking Institute (now Post-Polio Health International): Saint Louis, MO. (ISSN 0361-4166). Contact to obtain a copy of this collection of 40 stories by individuals with a disability (including 30 polio survivors) explaining how they "got here from there."

Smith, Diane Rice. (1982). My Two Cents Worth (collection of poems). Self-published: IL.

Swan, Frances Mueller. (1984). Once Upon a Rhyme (collection of poems). Self-published: USA.

Tate, Hermine. (1989). More Than One Way to Skin a Cat. Self-published: Layfayette, LA.

Zola, Irving Kenneth. (1982). Missing Pieces: A Chronicle of Living with a Disability. Temple University Press: Philadelphia, PA.


Ashwin, James. (1978). God's Mountain. G.R. Welch Co., Ltd.: Toronto, Canada. ISBN 0-9690760-02.

Banister, Betty. (1975). Trapped: A Polio Victim's Fight for Life. Western Producer Prairie Books: Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. ISBN 0-919306-49-7.

Chaput, Richard. (1972). All I Can Give. Alba House Communications: Canfield, OH.

Krikendall, Don, & Mary Phraner Warren. (1973). Bottom High to the Crowd. Walker and Co.: New York, NY. ISBN 0-8027-0409-3.

Marx, Joseph Laurance. (1974). Keep Trying: A Practical Book for the Handicapped by a Polio Victim. Harper and Row: New York, NY.

Sandness, Grace Layton. (1978). Brimming Over. Mini World Publications: Minneapolis, MN. To purchase a copy of Brimming Over for $1.00 plus shipping, contact

Sayers, William F. (1977). Don't Die on My Shift. Major Books: Canoga Park, CA. ISBN 0-89041-161-1.

Strauss, Elaine M. (1979). In My Heart I'm Still Dancing. Self-published: New Rochelle, NY.

Swan, Frances Mueller. (1978). Through the Valley: A Novel Based on a Life. Self-published: USA.

Tarnowski, Arthur. (1971). The Unbeaten Track. Harvill Press: London, England. ISBN 0-00272-362-X.


Bates, Paul & John Pellow. (1963). Horizontal Man. Longmans: London, England.

Cappaert, Lael. (1961). And God Said No. Augustana Book Concern: Rock Island, IL.

Chaput, Richard. (1964). Not to Doubt. Pageant Press, Inc.: New York, NY.

Farrell, James. (1965). The Lung. Hutchinson: London, England.

Higgins, Elizabeth Twistington. (1969). Still Life: The Story of a Struggle with Disablement. AR Mowbray and Co., Limited: London, England.

Holdsworth, Irene. (1963). Polio Is Not for Pity. George Allen and Unwin, Limited: London, England. (SBN 264-645049).

Kingery, Kenneth. (1966). As I Live and Breathe. Grosset and Dunlap Publishers: New York, NY.

Kriegel, Leonard. (1964). The Long Walk Home: An Adventure in Survival. Appleton-Century: New York, NY.

Marshall, Peter. (1964). The Raging Moon. Hutchinson and Co., Ltd.: London, England.

Marshall, Peter. (1962). Two Lives. Hutchinson and Co., Ltd.: London, England.

Robinson, Luther. (1960). We Made Peace with Polio. Broadman: Nashville, TN.

Schwab, Charles J. (1961). Man in a Wheelchair. Exposition Press: New York, NY.

Winter, Roger with Kenneth F. Hall. (1964). Point After Touchdown. Warner Press: Anderson, IN.


Hawkins, Leonard C. & Milton Lomask. (1957). The Man in the Iron Lung: The Story of Frederick B. Snite. The World's Work Limited: Great Britain.

LeComte, Edward. (1957). The Long Road Back: The Story of My Encounter with Polio. Beacon Hill: Boston, MA.

Walker, Turnley. (1951). Journey Together. David McKay Co., Inc.: New York, NY.

Walker, Turnley. (1950). Rise Up and Walk. EP Dutton and Co., Inc.: New York, NY.

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