by Mary Barton, 2015

The Eagle's Nest cover imageThe Eagle’s Nest is a true story about immigrants from Poland who escaped poverty and conscription into war to find a better life in America in the late 1800s. They settled in North Dakota and Minnesota and their descendants still inhabit the area today. Publisher’s summary:

In 1870, Piotor Riske died from the injuries he incurred during Poland’s struggle for independence from the cruel Russian regime of Czar Alexander II. His son Jan fled his homeland in search of freedom. Unwilling to face the rigors of conscription into the harsh Siberian wastelands of the Russian military, Jan, his bride Suzanna, and his younger cousin Josef escape Poland and face the hope, and trials, of the New World, America. In this epic saga, the War between the States is over, the slaves are free, but the native Indian dilemma is not yet resolved. This true, historically accurate, compelling story depicts the struggles, terror and uncertainty experienced by these pioneers who established an extensive family line in Dakota Territory, in what would become the state of North Dakota. Journey with the Riskes from war-torn Poland, to the coal mines of Pennsylvania, to the wilds of the Dakota frontier, in their fight for survival and independence. Descendants of the family they established in the late 1800s still populate North Dakota and Minnesota.

OK. Shameless plug…this was written by my sister. And edited by yours truly. But it’s still an awesome, true account of my family’s history going back several generations, written in novel format. It is also probably a similar history of many generations of people who went through similar struggles to start a new life in a strange new country, back during a time when America was practically giving away land, just to lure people to come here, break ground, settle the land, and build communities. That’s the story that this book tells.

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