Keepsakes for the Heart

Amelia Townsend


What would you do if you had no home and no family? Where would you turn if every road ended at a brick wall? Sarah Bishop Hart, a small, gentle woman from the hills of Southwest Virginia, was born into a world without hope.

When she was five years old, her father hired her out to a family she had never met. From that day, Sarah never knew a real home or what it was like to have a true family. She ate from table scraps, slept in outbuildings, and never felt welcome --no matter where she was. She lived with one fiercely held desire‹ to have a home of her own. When she married the man of her dreams, a half-blood Indian with secrets of his own --Sarah thought she had realized her fantasy. Little did she know her troubles were just beginning.

Keepsakes for the Heart sets the life of Sarah Bishop Hart against the mountains and the coal mines, The Great Depression and two World Wars, the women's movement, and other upheavals of the twentieth century. Sarah's simple mountain philosophy offers a lesson to anyone who has ever thought about giving up, "You can be anything you want. You just got to be tough as an old pine knot. Trust God to take care of you. And keep the good things in your heart. Pull them out to keep you going when times are bad."


Hardcover ISBN: 1-57072-230-7 / $26.95
Trade Paperback ISBN: 1-57072-201-3 / $16.95
6 x 9, 222 pages, Historical Biography

About The Author Amelia Ruth Townsend was born in a house that stands near the railroad tracks in the Southern Section of Big Stone Gap, Virginia. Both her grandfathers mined coal in Keokee, Stonega and Roda. The family took Route 23 South to North Carolina when her grandfather retired. Townsend earned a BA in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has been a television news reporter, writer and free-lance producer/director. Currently, she lives in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Dink Shackleford, Historical Consultant for Keepsakes for the Heart A true man of the hills, Dink E. Shackleford grew up in Keokee, Virginia. The son of a mine owner, he expected to grow into leadership with the family business, but fate had other plans. At the age of fifteen, Dink was injured in an accident at a mine and has been confined to a wheelchair ever since. He earned undergraduate degrees and a graduate degree from East Tennessee State University. He is the Executive Director of the Virginia Mining Association and the Editor in Chief of the Virginia Mining Journal.


The above information was taken from The Overmountain Press, the publisher of this book. All contents  of this page The Overmountain Press, P.O. Box 1261, Johnson City, TN 37605