When her tinsmith father and brothers head West, Polish immigrant Marie Kotlarczyk has no choice but to go along. Family, after all, is family. The Dakota Territories are anything but welcoming to the Kotlarczyks, and as the months trip by, Marie must pick up the hammers she’s secretly desired but also feared. When she faces the skeptical people of Flats Town, the demands of the local Army commander, and her public failures, her inner voice grows destructively, forcing Marie to decide exactly who she is and what it means to be a woman smith.
About the Author
As one of (if not the only) female coppersmith in America (or the world), Sara Dahmen works as a metalsmith of vintage and modern cookware and manufactures pure metal kitchenware in tin, copper, and iron in her garage. Her debut novel, Widow 1881, won the Laramie Award grand prize for Western Historical Fiction, Fiction Book of the Year from Author’s Circle, featured as a Pulpwood Queen Book Club Book, and is in talks for media development. She has published over 100 articles as a contributing editor for trade magazines, and recently spoke at TEDx Rapid City. She is the co-founder of the upcoming American Pure Metals Guild, and is also an apprentice to a master tinsmith in Wisconsin, where she works with tools from the 1700 and 1800’s to build vintage cookware or design custom work from scratch. When not writing or sewing authentic clothing for 1830’s fur trade reenactments, she can be found managing her household (not very well), hosting themed dinner parties, reading the Economist and reference books, brainstorming with her husband, John, or playing with her three young children. She is also extremely active in her Port Washington, Wisconsin community, sitting on boards and volunteer positions throughout the city.