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Short Synopsis
Historian and legal scholar Annette Gordon-Reed presents this epic work that tells the story of the Hemingses, an American slave family, and their close blood ties to Thomas Jefferson.

Full Synopsis
This epic work tells the story of the Hemingses, whose close blood ties to our third president had been systematically expunged from American history until very recently. Now, historian and legal scholar Annette Gordon-Reed traces the Hemings family from its origins in Virginia in the 1700s to the family's dispersal after Jefferson's death in 1826. It brings to life not only Sally Hemings and Thomas Jefferson but also their children and Hemings's siblings, who shared a father with Jefferson's wife, Martha. The Hemingses of Monticello sets the family's compelling saga against the backdrop of Revolutionary America, Paris on the eve of its own revolution, 1790s Philadelphia, and plantation life at Monticello. Much anticipated, this book promises to be the most important history of an American slave family ever written.

"[Listeners] will find it absorbing." ---The New York Times

"Fascinating, wise and of the utmost importance.... Gordon-Reed's genius for reading nearly silent records makes this an extraordinary work." ---Publishers Weekly Starred Review

"Gordon-Reed is a true storyteller---and a truth-teller." ---The Philadelphia Inquirer

"Gordon-Reed has given us an important story that is ultimately about the timeless quest for justice and human dignity." ---San Francisco Chronicle

"Not simply a fascinating story in itself, but a new perspective on how the humanity of slaves and a slave owner could adjust and survive in circumstances designed to obliterate it." ---Edmund S. Morgan, author of American Slavery

"One cannot imagine another historian matching her exhaustive research and interpretive balance." ---David Levering-Lewis, author of W. E. B. Du Bois: The Fight for Equality and the American Century

"This is a masterpiece brimming with decades of dedicated research and dexterous writing." ---Library Journal Starred Review

"This revelatory American story provides some much needed insight into Southern antebellum life and the various contradictions involving the views and behavior of slave masters and their relations to their slaves." ---Los Angeles Times

"Annette Gordon-Reed is a prodigiously gifted historian and The Hemingses of Monticello is her masterpiece." ---Peter Onuf, author of Jefferson's Empire

"This work catapults Gordon-Reed into the very first rank of historians of slavery." ---John Hope Franklin, author of From Slavery to Freedom
New York Times Bestseller

Los Angeles Times Bestseller

Publishers Weekly Bestseller

Washington Post Top Ten Book of 2008

Bestseller

Audie Finalist

AudioFIle Bestseller

New York Times Bestseller

New York Times Bestseller

Publishers Weekly Review

Library Journal Review

New York Times Bestseller

The Hemingses of Monticello

An American Family

Author Annette Gordon-Reed

Narrated by Karen White

Publication date Nov 3, 2008

Running time 32 hrs

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