Beyond the legend of the creation of the American flag, we know very little about the facts of Betsy Ross life Perhaps with one snip of her scissors she convinced the nation s future first president that five pointed stars suited better than six Perhaps not Miller recovers for the first time the full story of Betsy Ross, sharing the woman as she truly was Miller pieces together the fascinating life of this little known and much beloved figure, showing that she is important to our history not just because she made a flag, but because she embraced the resistance movement with vigor, reveled in its triumphs, and suffered its consequences....
|Title||:||Betsy Ross and the Making of America|
|Publisher||:||St Martin s Griffin Reprint edition June 7, 2011|
|Number of Pages||:||496 pages|
|File Size||:||764 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Betsy Ross and the Making of America Reviews
Normally when I review a book, I first read the book and write my review, then I read reviews written by other people. In the case of "Betsy Ross and the Making of America", my introduction to the book was via a review in the "New York Times Book Review" dated May 9, 2010. It was not a flattering review. The reviewer, Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, a professor at Harvard, accuses the author, Marla R. Miller, a professor of American History at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, of "sentimental fiction" which "weakens her own historical prose, which is strong enough to stand on its own" and "defeats the ultimate purpose of her book, which is to rediscover the woman behind the legend." Nevertheless, I was intrigued by the fact that, other than books for children, this is the first biography of Betsy Ross ever written. Intrigued enough to buy and read the book despite the poor review.
This is an amazing book and a fine read. Betsy Ross, as Miller states is, after Abigail Adams, the best known woman of the American Revolution, but there are very few primary sources about her extant (no voluminous correspondence, as with the Adamses), Miller has done painstaking research to be able to reconstruct her life in 18th c. Philadelphia, earning a living as a skilled needlewoman and upholsterer. She is not an aristocrat, but a middle-class working woman, of the kind who contributed behind the scenes the "the making of America." Betsy married three times (she was widowed twice), raised numerous children and lived into her eighties, all the while earning a living, as did many women like her. Thank God for feminist historians like Marla Miller and also Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, author of "The Midwife's Tale," who bring into the open the heretofore ignored or deprecated contributions of ordinary women of the Revolutionary and early national periods of US history.
After teaching American Women's History for 15 years, I thought I knew most of what could be known about Betsy's story. I was always careful to distinguish her legend from her actual story, and to discuss the sociocultural influences that created & perpetuated the legend but distorted & ultimately erased her history from the memory of most Americans. The general outlines of that history were known (or at least available) to historians, but not the details. So, as one who has always found the details more fascinating than the generalities, I was frustrated and left with a personal curiosity that secondary sources were unable to satisfy. Until now!
This is a book that I always recommend to American history teachers and students and readers who enjoy well-written biographies and history in general. It is one of my favourite biographies and favourite books because of how the author treats the story of Betsy Ross exposing the fine line between history and legend. This is an enjoyable and meaningful read because reader has to determine how much ofthe story of the woman who supposedly sewed the first American flag is true historical fact and how much is legend. This book helps readers of history be more discerning when sifting through facts.
This book was so unbelievably good that I was amazed. The details of the life style of Betsy Ross were wonderful and the details of her work were so enlightening. My daughter read this to me as I was knitting in the evening and it was a wonderful experience. It was educational and gave me a new appreciation for the beginnings of our country and the simple, hardworking people who were called to be part of it. Marla R. Miller is no slouch when it comes to research and yet made this a compelling story, not dry information.
A great book about not only Betsy Ross but about Philadelphia and by extension, the country at the time of the Revolutionary War. As a history buff, and one especially interested the the RW, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Written as a story and not just a list of facts and dates, the characters and settings truly come alive. After reading this is went to the Betsy Ross house in Philly just to see it and connect it to the book. A