If you were born with retardation or a deformity in the 19th century and early part of the 20th century, you ended up either as the sideshow in a circus or in a state institution which functioned as either a prison, work camp or warehouse, depending upon the degree of your developmental disability. Old Pinhead is the story of a young man born with moderate microcephalia whose mother would t commit him to an institution at the cost of her marriage. After her death he was committed to a place called The Cascade Custodial School For the Retarded. This is the chronicle of his five year plan and efforts to escape from the institution and live life as a free man.
Fredrick Zydek taught theology at the College of Saint Mary for many years. He is the author of a celebrated biography of Charles Taze Russell, a novel entitled Learning the Ways of Coyote, dozens of religious articles, short fiction and nine volumes of poetry. His work has appeared in America, Catholic Digest, Christianity Today, Conscience, Poetry, The Presbyterian Record, U.S. Catholic, Sojourners and many others. Retired, he makes his home in Omaha, Nebraska where he continues to write full time.