top of page



The reviews are coming in. It is interesting to see how the thoughts about American Tapestry differ among the various professional reviewers. I am happy to say that all of the reviews are generally favorable. Below you will find excerpts from the reviews as well as links to the complete reviews.

"Every family has its story, but most lack the records and a worthy chronicler equipped to tell its saga. Few are graced by a storyteller like Pat Speth Sherman. Sherman’s American Tapestry is a captivating tale well told. Her sweeping yet intimate true story, spanning two centuries of ordinary life, is nothing less than extraordinary. Sherman’s vibrant characters—her ancestors—were not presidents or generals or titans of industry, but they embody American history in ways that reach beneath and beyond history textbook narratives. American Tapestry’s saga is family history and American history, an exemplary, lively exploration of how real people experienced and shaped their past—and our past. Throughout, Sherman is a deft, unassuming but perceptive guide, a loving but critical narrator, who leads us not only on a rich journey through the American past but takes us along on her own personal expedition of discovery."

—Matthew Dennis, University of Oregon Professor of History Emeritus, and author of Red, White, and Blue Letter Days: An American Calendar; Seneca Possessed: Indians, Witchcraft, and Power in the Early American Republic; and numerous other books, essays, articles, and reviews.


"Who makes history? We all do, for better and for worse. In this compelling account of family and local history, Pat Sherman explains how ordinary folk wove the complex fabric of American life. Ranging from the French and Indian War to the labor wars of America’s industrial revolution, she recounts the wrongs done to her ancestors without flinching from the wrongs they did to others. In the process, she produces not only an engaging narrative of American history, but also a meditation on the nature of historical knowledge, how it is produced, and how it is suppressed. Pat Sherman’s research made her think differently about the American history she learned in school. Frank, honest, and deftly written, American Tapestry offers a new perspective on the American past."

-- Kevin Kenny, Glucksman Professor of History, New York University

Kirkus Reviews

"A rigorous, absorbing family account that offers a microcosm and a macrocosm...Sherman is a competent writer and is passionate about the downtrodden...Readers get a very thoughtful panorama of 250 years of history, change, and how this 'middling' family dealt with all of it. She is a formidable and patient researcher."

Kirkus Reviews

For complete review click here

Pat Speth Sherman proves herself a skilled chronicler of America's past in this account of her family's role in various epochal events...At times, Sherman's family is overshadowed by the period context she renders in careful detail. However, her writing never becomes dryly recitative, but remains vividly pictorial and even poetic throughout...Genealogy buffs will especially admire the detective work Sherman performed in excavating her family's past, but anyone interested in a fresh perspective on American history can profit from her rich work.

—Blue Ink Review

For complete review click here

BlueInk Review

The fascinating family biography American Tapestry collects an in-depth series of historical accounts together to trace the early history of the Eastern and Central United States....Their lives are shared to reflect the progress and setbacks that the nation weathered thanks to the dedicated labor of ordinary individuals. The fact that each person in [Sherman's] story is more or less average...results in an intriguing demonstration of how the consequences of major events...manifested in places far removed from their scenes of action.

—Foreward Clarion Review

For complete review click here.


Sherman’s historic account weaves detailed chronicles of her Colonial-era ancestors, based on her extensive original research, with a clear-eyed view of American history, demonstrating the vital role of small-town civil activities, labor, and commerce in the nation’s development and never shying away from the past’s brutal realities...Sherman emphasizes the treatment of Native Americans during the Revolutionary War era, pointing out that the destruction of the Iroquois nation—and the “centuries-long genocide of Native Americans, in all of its malignant forms”—is too rarely the focus in accounts of the American story...The original research and the book’s confrontation with the American past are invaluable...

Takeaway: A confrontation with American history and one family’s rise, as revealed in original research and admirable frankness about the past.

BookLife Reviews

For complete review click here.


I have a limited number of signed copies that you can purchase at my shop.
You can buy American Tapestry at the following online retailers.

Barnes &

Wholesale purchase through Ingram Content Group



Publishers Weekly October 11, 2021


“Another damn'd thick, square book! Always, scribble, scribble, scribble! Eh! Mr. Gibbon?

          ― Duke of Gloucester (On publication of Vol. 1 of The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire”

Ermahgerd, what a book! It came yesterday, and I've just dipped into it, here and there, and was delighted each time.  I'm blown away by its depth and breadth.

        Joe Yetter

Pat Sherman's book 20211008.jpg

It's very engaging. It's dense and historical, but it doesn't get dry. The prose is immaculate.

       Eric S.

bottom of page