Mink Snopes' Farm (Location Key)


Faulkner describes the Frenchman's Bend tenant farm where Mink Snopes lives with his family in some detail in both The Hamlet and The Mansion. In the first novel he also uses it to represent the many other tenant farms where Mink has lived and worked over the years. For instance, the novel refers to him seeing his children "across whatever sorry field or patch" he happens to be farming and sitting on "whatever rented porch" resting from his labor (264). The farm he's sharecropping when he kills Houston is described similarly in both texts. The Hamlet calls it "a broken-backed cabin" off a "narrow road back in the hills" (80), four miles from Frenchman's Bend (268). The cabin is laid out as a 'dogtrot cabin': a "paintless two-room cabin with an open hallway between and a leanto kitchen" (243). Mink put his name in "crude lettering" on the "battered and scarred mailbox" in front of the "foul muck-trodden lot" (80-81), but in fact the land he farms as a share cropper is "a foreclosed portion of Houston's farm" (275) that now, like so much else in the Bend, is owned by Will Varner. The Mansion locates the "paintless repairless tenant cabin" (10) where Mink lives in the context of other tenant farms in the hill country around Frenchman's Bend: "a section of small worn-out farms tilted and precarious among the eroded folds like scraps of paper" (458). And this novel re-visits the farm after almost forty years, when Mink returns to it after killing Flem: all that remains of the cabin is "part of the roof," parts of the walls, and "a hole in the ground" - what was once the cellar - which is where Mink looks for refuge (459).

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