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Reviewed by Deborah Lloyd for Readers' Favorite
Sylvester W. Jeffrey, who was called S.W., lived with his siblings on the family farm in Putnam County in northwestern Ohio. Their parents died in 1847. When their grandfather died in 1852, the oldest brother Oliver took over the management of the farm. Aunt Sarah visited frequently, and the family knew their neighbors well. They often went into town to attend church and buy needed supplies at Mr. McClure’s general store. S.W. was in love with Adaline Truby, a beautiful neighboring girl. The family was aware of Abraham Lincoln’s Presidency and the impending Civil War. Many of the young men joined the war effort. Eventually, several young men in the rural area lost their lives on the battlefield. In Footprints in the Dust: A Powerful and Heartfelt Ohio Civil War Story, written by L. E. Hutchinson, a story based on an ancestral family is imparted.
The story describes the challenges and joys of American farm life during the 1860s. The Jeffrey family often turned to playing music and dancing, as well as social gatherings in homes to bring balance to their lives of demanding farm work. The author skillfully portrayed how the Civil War brought disruption and sadness into families’ lives. At the end of the book, she shares her relationship with these ancestors. Additionally, she includes many characters in the story, demonstrating how much people relied on their families and neighbors to build meaningful lives. Author L. E. Hutchinson has crafted a memorable story in Footprints in the Dust. This is an enjoyable and informative book that is both heartwarming and heartrending.