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Dear Companion
The Inner Life of Martha Jefferson
Kelly Joyce Neff
ISBN: 9781571740755
Book (Paperback)
Hampton Roads Publishing Company
6 x 9
632 pages
October 1, 1997


"Kelly Neff has found what every historian yearns for: the details that give the past a pulse. Her a moving love story, becomes the 'dear companion' of Thomas Jefferson's life. Through Patty's voice, we step back into an eighteenth century Virginia...and into the everyday life of a plantation wife. Kelly Neff has done an extraordinary job of imagining who Patty Jefferson must have been." -Natalie S. Bober, author of Thomas Jefferson: Man on a Mountain
Martha (Patty) Jefferson is often seen as little more than a background figure overshadowed by her husband's political, literary, and scientific achievements. Dear Companion, by contrast, vividly depicts a wife, mother, and busy mistress of a plantation. We come to know the Jeffersons as a young couple very much in love and share in all the joys and sorrows of their ten-year marriage.

Although presented as historical fiction, this biography is actually reconstructed from the author's past-life recall. Ms. Neff's intense familiarity with the period enables her to bring wonderfully to life a time and family that will be forever of interest to all Americans.

Hampton Roads Publishing