Genre: Literary/Historical Fiction
William “Bill” Strong is born to a poor family in Dorset during the English Civil Wars. After losing his parents, 11-year-old Bill is sold as an indentured servant to a wealthy tobacco merchant and sent to Virginia to work off his servitude. After working for 8 years, Bill settles in Virginia as a poor tenet to yet another wealthy landlord.
Appalachian Dynasty follows his descendants through their mountains and valleys of poverty and privilege tracking their journey from farmers in southern England to coal miners in Southeastern Kentucky. Epitomizing the stereotype of a poor white family, Bill Strong and his descendants struggle against systematic forces designed to pit poor whites against people of color to ensure their loyalty during the Civil War, suffrage, and the Civil Rights movement, all while being exploited for their labor, land, and integrity. They learn they can never escape the sovereignty of wealthy men.
Loosely based on my own exploration of my family’s genealogy and settlement in southeastern Kentucky.
A novel in four parts-323 years-9 generations
- Part 1: Divine Right of Kings (~1645-1776)
- Part 2: For God and Country (~1777-1865)
- Part 3: Us v. Them (~1866-1920)
- Part 4: Can You Hear the Canary’s Song? (~1921-1973)