Popular columnist writing as "The Country Contributor," Strauss (1863-1918) idealized simple rural life and traditional roles for women in a time of national shifts in class and gender relations. Began writing for hometown newspaper, Rockville Tribune, 1880, for Indianapolis News, 1903, and for Ladies Home Journal, 1905, which reached a million readers worldwide.
Through her columns and influence, Strauss worked to save old-growth forest, called Turkey Run, from destruction by lumber company. Turkey Run became Indiana's second state park during Indiana's centennial celebration, 1916, at a time of heightened national interest in conservation. Indiana women's clubs dedicated a statue to her efforts at Turkey Run, 1922.