I just got this book in the mail from Thomas Nelson publishers, and I wanted to get a review posted before it’s too late because I think it would make a wonderful Christmas or New Year’s present for anyone interested in American history or any homeschooler or teacher of American history. As soon as the book came, Brown Bear Daughter was browsing through it, reading me excerpts, partly to avoid finishing her math lesson, but also because she was genuinely interested in the short vignettes from U.S. history.
The book consists of a story for each day of the year related to events that occurred on that date. For instance, for today, December 16th, Bennett and Cribb recount the story of the Boston Tea Party which took place on the evening of December 16, 1773. Then, underneath the short four paragraph account, there’s a list of other events that also happened on December 16th.
I have a similar book called On This Day in History, but what I like about this one is its unabashed Americanism and willingness to mention, and even feature, Christians and spiritual heroes as well as secular ones. For example, the entry for October 5th tells about the Great Awakening and about preacher Jonathan Edwards who was born on that date. Another entry features the first American-born Catholic saint, Elizabeth Seton. Also, I think the entries in The American Patriot’s Almanac are more kid-friendly and interestingly written to draw you into the story and inspire further research.
In addition to the page for each day of the year, there are extra features scattered throughout the book: Flags of the Revolutionary War, The History of the Stars and Stripes, Fifty All-American Movies, Flag Etiquette, The Declaration of Independence (text and history), The U.S. Constitution (text and history), The Gettysburg Address, The Emancipation Proclamation, The Pledge of Allegiance, The American’s Creed, songs and poems of American patriotism, and the written words of various prayers for America called Prayers for the American People. You get a lot of information here, a lot of bang for the buck, packed into 515 pages, including an index.
The American Patriot’s Almanac isn’t a chronological look at U.S. history, but I plan to use it daily next year as we study through the history of our country chronologically. These daily nuggets will review or preview what we’re studying and help me to reinforce the meaning of the events that make up our history. I”ll be using it for blogging, too, since I like to feature birthdays of famous people and events in history. Can you tell that I’m really excited about this book?
Thanks to the folks at Thomas Nelson for sending me a copy of this book for review.