A Snowy Night in Iowa
by Sylvia Davenport-Veith
The interior of a small train depot
in Des Moines, Iowa. April 30, 1945 at 2:00am. Set in 1945, this is
the story of Constance and Vernon, two young African Americans who are both
serving in the United States Army. While waiting for their respective trains
in a Des Moines, Iowa train station, they interact with Bernard and Hilda
Schiebler, two German Jews anxious about family in Hitler's death camps.
Tension ensues when a radio, the only source for news, goes silent. Social
issues of the day provide a rich background for this memorable love story.
BERNARD SCHIEBLER: 55. Now an American citizen, this
German Jewish man harbors sorrow, worry, and rage as he seeks news of
Hitler's demise and the liberation of Nazi concentration camps. He
speaks with a German accent.
HILDA SCHIEBLER: 53. As Bernard's wife, Hilda
understands his outbursts. Even though she is often overcome by her
grief, Hilda never abandons hope. She speaks with a German accent.
VERNON WALTERS: 25. African American Soldier: He is
brilliant, ambitious, and determined to make his way in a racist
America. On this night, his secret love for Constance reaches an urgent
need to be expressed.
CONSTANCE JONES: 23. African American WAC: She is
beautiful and full of hope for America's future. Constance believes
strongly in "Double Victory," meaning a victory over Hitler can
translate into a victory over America's racism. She's a southern girl
with strong ties to her family and a goal to teach when she returns to
Georgia. Vernon has become her best friend. She is somewhat
uncomfortable with his muted overtures. Still, there is something
special about him…
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