Ezra and Isabel Pound

This photograph from the Hailey Centennial Project Collection depicts one of Hailey’s most famous early residents, the famed and often controversial poet Ezra Pound, with his mother, Isabel.

Pound was born on Oct. 30, 1885, in Hailey while his father, Homer Loomis Pound, worked as a registrar for the General Land Office during the silver mining boom. Shortly after Ezra’s birth, Isabel and 18-month-old Ezra moved to New York, leaving Idaho for good. We all know the details of who Ezra would become, but has one ever stopped to consider who his mother Isabel was before she became the famous poet’s mother?

The Community Library’s Jeanne Rodger Lane Center for Regional History has in its Ezra Pound Collection an original letter from Isabel Pound to her mother Mary Weston dated May 22, 1885. At this time, Isabel would have been 25 years old and about three months pregnant with Ezra; however, she makes no mention of her pregnancy. The letter details a short trip her husband, Homer; “Mr. Pound” (likely her father-in-law); a “Mr. Forte” and herself took to visit a mine beyond Deer Creek Hot Springs. She describes the landscape, writing “The drive was delightful and merry, the scenery fine. At one eminence we had a picture before us like Bierstadt’s Rocky Mountains, peak after peak until one could distinguish the outline of the farthest blue distance…”

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