A Portrait Of Two American Families

Book Summary    Book Guide > Book Summary | About The Authors | Reading Samples | Look Inside             
The Unknown Rockwell: A Portrait Of Two American Families" by James A. “Buddy” Edgerton and Nan O’Brien | Foreword by Dick Clark (Television Producer and Media Legend) | Biography & US History


Price: $29.95                             Publisher: Battenkill River Press

Exterior: Hardcover                    Distributor: Whisper Productions

ISBN: 978-0-9677413-6-9             Pages: 288, with 32 pages with
                                                             photos & illustrations

Publication Date: 10/08/2009     Measurements: 6 x 9

“The Unknown Rockwell – the artist you thought you knew, told by the man who knew him best…”


You’ve seen his face a million times; now - for the first time - meet the man who inspired Norman Rockwell: Rockwell’s most illustrated Boy Scout, next door neighbor, and dear friend. Hear stories about Norman Rockwell, the private man, you’ve never heard before from the one man who knew him in a way no one else could – James A. “Buddy” Edgerton.

And, for the first time, see an unknown Rockwell portrait that hung on his family’s wall for almost sixty years, a portrait Rockwell gave to the family personally, upon the death of Buddy’s young cousin.


In today’s times of economic hardship and electronic disjointedness in families, we long for core values, even as the pace of our lives pulls us apart. The need and desire to connect is important; but yet somewhere along the way, caught up in our laptops and texts, touch screens and Twitter accounts, we have lost touch with what really matters: Family, community, hard work, and simply sharing face-to-face time with one another.


Authors Buddy Edgerton and Nan O’Brien remind us in their upcoming book “The Unknown Rockwell: A Portrait of Two American Families” of the courage that got our country through an incredibly tough time in the past, that of the Great Depression and World War II, and urge us to unpeel the distractions of our current lives so that we are empowered to embrace the challenges of our times instead of being defeated by them. The book resonates with the memories of our own family histories told around the dining room table, when families still gathered to share a meal


The book, told in anecdotal narratives, provides a first person account of two families who were unique because of both their disparity and their similarity. While they came from two economic ends of the spectrum – the Edgertons, poor dairy farmers/the Rockwells, successful due to Norman’s talents – they shared a love of family, a commitment to integrity, and a consideration of one another that created a closeness of friendship that mirrored the physical closeness of their two houses.


The book is supplemented by 32 pages of personal photos and photos from Norman’s actual modeling sessions, accompanied by the resulting illustrations.


Photo: Buddy, Norman Rockwell and Jim Edgerton in Stockbridge, MA (1974)