In a country that has always prided itself on its toughness, individuality, and youthful spirit, we share one common thread, woven through time and unchanged in popularity -- durable cotton denim jeans. Journey through the history of jeans, from their invention during the Gold Rush through the turbulent eras that preceded the 21st Century. Watch as denim slacks help Americans define themselves, whether that definition is strong, unpretentious, pretentious, informal, comfortable, classless, haute couture, hard-working, or reliable. Also, revisit the craze for vintage blue jeans, when faded and worn fueled a frenzy of global buying. Artful photography of denim as seen on bodies, in retail stores, and in the flea markets of America, add to the thoughtful essays, making this a iconic book certain to be treasured in fashion circles for decades.