Those Peterson Boys: Brothers and Books

I actually “met” younger brother Dennis first, enjoying stories about his growing up years in his memoir.

Dennis Peterson

Dennis L. Peterson is an independent author, historian, and editor with several publications in regional and national journals and magazines. A former history teacher and curriculum writer, his areas of special interest include Southern history, the War Between the States, the Great Depression, and World War II.

He also served as senior technical editor for Lockheed Martin Energy Systems, Inc. at the historic Oak Ridge, Tennessee, nuclear facilities. Dennis lives in Taylors, South Carolina, where he is a member of several historical organizations. He is on the board and a docent for History Museum of Travelers Rest.

Dennis is married, has four grown daughters, and several grandchildren.

Look Unto the Hills: Stories of Growing Up in Rural East Tennessee

My Thoughts: This delightful memoir is composed of 51 essays, divided into seven sections: Farm Stories, Play, School, Work, People, Animals, and Values. Among the compelling stories is one about his parents hosting a real European prince, the sting of Merthiolate, playing “backyard brigadier,” being chosen as a patrol boy, the very real dangers of following an older brother’s ideas.

Here’s his brother Dale’s review: “A very interesting book, indeed – mostly because I lived through many of these stories along side my younger brother Dennis!”

Our American Stories: I was so taken with Dennis Peterson’s memoir that I suggested he record a few memories for them. He did, and they are wonderful to listen to! Check out his website, where those audios are featured, as well as Dennis’s other books.

Dale Peterson

Dale, the older Peterson brother, is a husband, father of five children, grandfather, author, and international speaker for schools, churches, and conferences. One son, USMC Captain Justin Dale Peterson was killed in 2006, while serving in Iraq.

Dale Peterson has spoken in various capacities in all fifty states and 29 foreign countries. With over 30 years of pastoral experience, Dale identifies with the passions and problems that pastors encounter, and is an encourager of pastors globally, whether speaking in the local church or at conferences.

Although much of the year is spent outside of the United States, Dale is most passionate about America. For more than 25 years Dale and his children toured the contiguous 48 states presenting a one-hour patriotic show called A SALUTE TO AMERICA! in churches and civic organizations, especially around such American holidays as Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Veterans Day.

Dale also has a personal blog and does guest writing for various religious publications.

Leave a Well in the Valley: Turning Your Tragedies into Triumphs

My Thoughts: Because the author has been through it all–loss of a marriage, a son killed in Iraq, miserable health problems, depression, false accusations–he uses his experiences to encourage readers that they too can survive. And through the healing that goes along with it, they can be beacons for those who are experiencing similar life crises.

This memoir would be especially useful for a person serving in a church, but encouraging for anyone in the process of going through deep personal valleys.

Dale and Dennis have a sister, Gina, who looks more skeptical about the photographer than about those ornery brothers.


    • Remember Dennis’s story about the green grapes? That’s what gave me the idea! I like featuring trilogies, or two books related somehow. This one is kinda your fault! Yes, I had fun with it.

    • When I checked Amazon for my review of Dennis’s book, I had to laugh to see one from Dale. I’m rereading Dennis’s, and when I got to the story about the grapes not being ripe, but talking his younger brother to having some, then what it led to, well, the idea formed right then about sharing both memoirs.

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