America’s First Daughter by Stephanie Dray

I can’t express enough how much I loved this book. First of all it is historical so it is near and dear to my heart. This book is about the life of Martha “Patsy” Jefferson Randolph and how she was instrumental in her father, Thomas Jefferson’s illustrious political career. From this point on be forewarned that there will be spoilers. If you want to buy this book click here.



When Patsy Jefferson was a small child her mother died but on her death bed she made her husband Thomas Jefferson promise her to never marry again so that her daughters would never have to deal with having a step mother. That left Thomas Jefferson (TJ) with having a highly public profile and not having a woman on his arm for social functions. At a young age he became the United States Minister to France and he took Patsy with him. She was educated in the best of convent school for girls that was available. She was taught to be a proper lady and to support her father throughout his career.

Now this book is about Patsy, however, other than just a few short years she always lived with her father so his story is told as well through this book. TJ fell in love with one of his slaves and had multiple children with him. She went to France where she was automatically made free but when he returned to the United States she willingly chose to return with him but bargained with him that their children together would be free. This is the version of the story that this book provides. I would love to hear Sally’s side of the story.

Patsy was in a miserable marriage with Tom Randolph. He was never successful and TJ financially supported them throughout their entire lives. They lived most of their lives at Monticello with him. There is so much more to this story but I don’t want to ruin it for you. Please get this book and enjoy it as much as I do.



2 responses to “America’s First Daughter by Stephanie Dray

  1. This book sounds great! The cover is beautiful, too. When I was young I loved to read about the presidents. I read all the presidents’ biographies in our school library. Love your book reviews. I may have to do a few of those myself. 🙂

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