Tomlinson Hill

The Remarkable Story of Two Families who Share the Tomlinson Name - One White, One Black

Chris Tomlinson

Thomas Dunne Books

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Foreign correspondent Chris Tomlinson returns to Texas to discover the truth about his family’s slave owning history. Tomlinson Hill tells the story of two families, one black and one white, who trace their ancestry to the same Central Texas slave plantation. Tomlinson discovers that his counterpart in the African American family is LaDainian Tomlinson, one of the greatest running backs in the history of the National Football League. LaDainian’s father was the last Tomlinson living on the Hill when he died in 2007. LaDainian’s earliest memories are from the idyllic community built by former slaves on the former plantation grounds. Chris learns that many of the stories surrounding the Civil War and the South that he learned as a child are simply untrue. He finds family letters that detail the mix of brutality and meager kindness that his relatives used to maintain order. He then compares and contrasts what the two families experienced at Emancipation, during Reconstruction, through the rise of the Ku Klux Klan and the Civil Rights era, and ending the day LaDainian’s father died. Tomlinson Hill is more than a history of two families; it tells the story of America and how slavery still shapes our society. And it ends with the fulfillment of Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream that one day the sons of slaves and the sons of slaveholders would meet in brotherhood.

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Reviews

Praise for Tomlinson Hill

 “A personal, unvarnished look at race in America.”—Mark K. Updegrove, presidential historian and author of Baptism By Fire

“A complex story, at times stark but with moments of hope, that offers insights into American race relations.”—Alwyn Barr, author of Black Texans

“A remarkable and essential book of personal and national history, a profound reckoning with the infinite tangles of race and identity along the roots and branches of the American family tree. It is a quietly epic story—spanning centuries—masterfully reconstructed, and memorably told...” —Philip Gourevitch, author of The Ballad of Abu Ghraib


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About the Author

Chris Tomlinson

CHRIS TOMLINSON is the Supervisory Correspondent for The Associated Press in Austin, Texas. He spent 14 years as a foreign correspondent, based in Africa but covering wars and disasters across the Middle East and Asia. His stories covered the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, civil wars in Somalia and Sudan and natural disasters in India and Congo. He is a fifth generation Texan and graduate of the University of Texas at Austin.

Chris Tomlinson

© Lisa Kaselak
Chris Tomlinson

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Available Formats and Book Details

Tomlinson Hill
The Remarkable Story of Two Families who Share the Tomlinson Name - One White, One Black
Chris Tomlinson

Hardcover

Hardcover
St. Martin's Press
Thomas Dunne Books
7/22/2014
Hardcover
ISBN: 9781250005472
ISBN10: 1250005477
6 1/8 x 9 1/4 inches, 448 pages, Plus two 8-page color photograph inserts
$26.99
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Thomas Dunne Books

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