Gabrielle Burton, novelist, died at 76

  Dead Famous

Gabrielle Burton, born in 1939 and died on September 3, 2015 from pancreatic cancer. She was a feminist novelist and screenwriter.

In 1972, Ms. Burton wrote “I’m Running Away From Home, but I’m Not Allowed to Cross the Street: A Primer of Women’s Liberation,” which National Journal magazine said “radiates good sense.”

Her “Heartbreak Hotel,” published in 1986, about seven women sharing a house, won the Maxwell Perkins Prize for outstanding first novel.

And “Manna From Heaven,” a film she wrote starring Shirley Jones and Cloris Leachman about an eccentric family that receives a financial windfall, was produced by her five daughters (and directed by two of them) in 2002, when she was 64. (Reviewing it in The New York Times, Dave Kehr called it “refreshingly sincere, gentle and good-natured.”)

But she was perhaps best known as the self-identified alter ego of Tamsen Donner, whose husband, George, led California-bound migrants by wagon train into the Sierra Nevada, where they became trapped by early snowfalls in the winter of 1846-47.

Gabrielle Burton died on September 3, 2015 from pancreatic cancer, she was age 76.