Woman Enough: The Irrepressible Loretta Lynn in 18 Vintage Photographs

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Loretta Lynn, the country legend known for such hits as “Fist City,” “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” and “You Ain’t Woman Enough (To Take My Man),” died on Tuesday at her Tennessee ranch at the age of 90. The singer-songwriter was nominated for 18 Grammys—she won three—and countless Country Music Association and Academy of Country Music awards over the course of her six-decade career.

Lynn was, indeed, a coal miner’s daughter, growing up as one of eight children in Butcher Hollow, Kentucky, and mothering her first child when she was only 16. (Lynn married her husband, Oliver Vanetta “Doolittle” Lynn, in 1948, raising six children with him in all; the pair remained together until his death in 1996.) She became a fixture on the country-music scene in Nashville not long after that, and despite local stations often refusing to play her songs (particularly “The Pill,” a 1975 ode to reproductive freedom), Lynn went on to form a successful musical partnership with singer-songwriter Conway Twitty and record a tribute album for her friend Patsy Cline that reached No. 2 on the Billboard charts.

In 1980, the film Coal Miner’s Daughter—which starred Sissy Spacek as Lynn and Tommy Lee Jones as Doolittle—became a box-office hit, familiarizing the world with Lynn’s work and life story. More than 20 years later, Lynn found another raft of new fans with the album Van Lear Rose, which she released with Jack White of the White Stripes in 2004. 

In celebration of Lynn’s life, take a look back at the beloved country star over the decades.



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