Meek and Mild coverHave you ever wondered what your ancestors were like ten or twelve generations ago? I’m fascinated by those genealogy television shows that trace census and military and property records back and discover amazing details.

That’s a bit of what happened to me. I discovered a family line that traced back to some of the earliest Amish settlers who arrived in Pennsylvania, and suddenly I wanted to understand more about Amish culture, values, and history. My curiosity led to the Valley of Choice series, which has an historical thread that tells the story of my ancestors.

But my curiosity was not yet sated. I started wondering about points in Amish history that have made the Amish who they are today, and that led to the Amish Turns of Time series. The first book, Wonderful Lonesome, explores a real Amish settlement in Colorado in 1914.

The second book, Meek and Mild, unpacks the turmoil in an Amish district along the Pennsylvania-Maryland border a few years later.

And for now, I’ll leave you hanging about the drama of Brightest and Best, coming late in the summer.

• What makes you curious about your own family history? What surprising facts have you uncovered?