Michelle Obama'sÂnbsp;family sagaÂnbsp;is a remarkable, quintessentially American storyâ#128;#148;a journey from slavery to the White House in five generations.Ânbsp;Yet, until now, little has been reported on the First Lady's roots. Prodigiously researched, American TapestryÂnbsp;traces the complex and fascinating tale of Michelle Obama's ancestors, a history that the First Lady did not even know herself. Rachel L. Swarns, a correspondent for the New York Times, brings into focus the First Lady's black, white, and multiracial forebears, and reveals for the first time the identity of Mrs. Obama's white great-great-great-grandfatherâ#128;#148;a man who remained hidden in her lineage for more than a century.
American TapestryÂnbsp;illuminates the lives of the ordinary people in Mrs. Obama's family tree who fought for freedom in the Revolutionary and Civil Wars; who endured the agonies of slavery, the disappointment of Reconstruction, the displacement of the Great Migration, and the horrors of Jim Crow to build a better future for their children. Swarns even found a possible link to the Jewish Reform movement.
Though it is an intimate family history,Ânbsp;American TapestryÂnbsp;is also the collective chronicle of our changing nation, a nation in which racial intermingling lingers in the bloodlines of countless citizens and slavery was the crucible through which many family linesâ#128;#148;black, white, and Native Americanâ#128;#148;were forged.
Epic in scopeÂnbsp;and beautifully rendered, this is a singularly inspiring story with resonance for us all.