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Winding Oak's Bookology Magazine

Tag Archives | Underground Railroad

Chasing Freedom Companion Booktalks

To get you started on the Bookstorm™ Books …

 

Alec’s Primer

Mildred Pitts Walter
illustrated by Larry Johnson
Vermont Folklife Center, 2005

  • Based on the true story of Alec Turner (1845-1923), who learned to read as a boy with the help of his owner’s daughter

  • Supplement the story with stories and songs from tape-recorded interviews with Daisy Turner, Alec’s daughter

  • A Carter G. Woodson honor book from a Coretta Scott King-winning author

 

All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Freedom

Angela Johnson
illustrated by E.B. Lewis
Simon & Schuster, 2014

  • Perfectly and powerfully, 289 words evoke a monumental event

  • Back matter includes author and illustrator notes, important dates list, short history of Juneteenth, and a glossary

  • Coretta Scott King Award-winning author and illustrator

 

Crossing Bok Chitto: A Choctaw Tale of Friendship and Freedom 

Tim Tingle
illustrated by Jeanne Rorex Bridges
Cinco Puntas Press, 2006

  • “Set in the Old South, Crossing Bok Chitto is an Indian book, written by Indian voices, and painted by an Indian artist” (from the author’s note)

  • Seven slaves cross to freedom, led by a young Choctaw girl; adds a new perspective to the established escape literature

  • Back matter includes short profile of the Choctaw nations and a note on Choctaw storytelling

 

Elizabeth Leads the Way: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the Right to Vote

Tanya Lee Stone
illustrated by Rebecca Gibbon
Henry Holt, 2008

  • The girlhood and young adult years of a leading famous suffragist

  • Author’s note includes a brief overview of Cady Stanton’s life and public image

  • ALA Notable, Junior Library Guild Premier Selection, 2009 Amelia Bloomer Award Book

 

Harriet Tubman, Secret Agent: How Daring Slaves and Free Blacks Spied for the Union during the Civil War

Thomas B. Allen
illustrated by Carla Bauer
National Geographic Children’s Books, 2006

  • Combines the story of Harriet Tubman’s post-Underground Railroad work as spy and military leader with a history of the abolitionist movement and the Civil War

  • Back matter includes time line, a bibliography, and notes and quote sources

  • Includes some secret codes to decipher!

 

Heart and Soul: the Story of America and African Americans

written and illustrated by Kadir Nelson
Balzer+Bray, 2012

  • “…a grand and awe-inspiring survey of the black experience in America, delivered in 108 pages” (Walter Dean Myers)

  • Coretta Scott King winner (author) AND Coretta Scott King honor (illustrator)

  • Back matter includes author’s note, timeline, extensive bibliography

 

I Could Do That! Esther Morris Gets Women the Right to Vote

Linda Arms White
illustrated by Nancy Carpenter
Farrar, Straus& Giroux, 2005

  • Picture book (somewhat fictionalized) biography of woman who was instrumental in the successful fight for women’s suffrage in Wyoming—51 years before it was won nationally

  • Back matter includes author’s note and resources

  • Humorous  illustrations expand the kid-appeal of the story

 

Many Thousand Gone: African Americans from Slavery to Freedom

Virginia Hamilton
illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
Knopf, 1993

  • Giant-hearted book from three children’s literature giants

  • 250 years of slavery in the U.S. told through profiles of slaves and freed people

  • Presented in chronological order, each chapter/profile includes a stunning black and white illustration by the Dillons

 

 

Marching with Aunt Susan: Susan B. Anthony and the Fight for Women’s Suffrage

Claire Rudolf Murphy
illustrated by Stacey Schuett
Peachtree, 2011

  • The narrative is from the point of view of Bessie Keith Pond, a (real) ten-year old California girl, which creates engaging immediacy to the history

  • Extensive back matter—perfect for report writing

  • Amelia Bloomer project 2012 book list

 

Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom

Carole Boston Weatherford
illustrated by Kadir Nelson
Jump at the Sun/Hyperion, 2006

  • Caldecott-honor for Nelson’s stunning illustrations; most are double-page spreads

  • Unique three-voiced narrative that is easy to follow and conveys the power of Tubman’s personal mission; we hear the storyteller, Harriet Tubman, and the voice of God as she hears it

  • Author is an NAACP image award finalist and Carter G. Woodson Award winner; author’s note includes concise biography of Tubman

 

Traveling the Freedom Road: From Slavery and the Civil War through Reconstruction

Linda Barrett Osborne
Henry N. Abrams, Inc., 2009

  • Published in association with the Library of Congress, it’s loaded with primary sources—documents and images

  • Narrative focuses on young people and includes many first-person recollections of the time period

  • Library of Congress author video and other resources to supplement reading

 

With Courage and Cloth: Winning the Fight for a Woman’s Right to Vote

Ann Bausum  
National Geographic, 2004

  • Detailed, photo-illustrated history of women’s suffrage in the U.S. from a Sibert honor and Carter Woodson Award author

  • Just why is “cloth” so important? A perfect topic for research and discussion

  • Back matter galore for reports

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Bookstorm™: Chasing Freedom

Bookstorm Chasing FreedomIn this Bookstorm™:

Chasing FreedomChasing Freedom

The Life Journeys of Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony, Inspired by Historical Facts
written by Nikki Grimes
illustrated by Michele Wood
Orchard Books, 2015

As Nikki Grimes writes in her author’s note for this book, “History is often taught in bits and pieces, and students rarely get the notion that these bits and pieces are connected.” Bookology wanted to look at this book for a number of reasons. We hope that you will consider the remarkable stories of freedom fighters Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony and the moments in history that the author reveals. We hope that you will study the illustrations by Michele Wood and discuss how each spread in the book makes you feel, how African motifs and quilt patterns are made an integral part of the book’s design, and how the color palette brings strength to the conversation between these two women. 

This conversation between these two women never took place. The subtitle reads “inspired by historical facts.” Nikki Grimes imagines a conversation that could have taken place between these two women, solidly drawn from the facts of their lives. Is this a new form of fiction? Nonfiction? You’ll have a meaningful discussion about the differences between fact, fiction, information text, nonfiction, and storytelling when you discuss this with your classroom or book club.

In each Bookstorm™, we offer a bibliography of books that have close ties to the the featured book. For Chasing Freedom, you’ll find books for a variety of tastes, interests, and reading abilities. The book will be comfortably read by ages 7 through 12. We’ve included picture books, nonfiction, videos, websites, and destinations for the plethora of purposes you might have. There are many fine books that fall outside of these parameters, but we chose to narrow the selection of books this time to those that followed the fight for women’s right to vote from the 1840s to 1920 and those that followed slavery in America until the Emancipation Proclamation and a few years beyond. These are the major concerns behind the work of Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony.

AFRICAN AMERICANS’ RIGHT TO BE FREE

Celebrating Freedom. Two recent books are included, one dealing with the Emancipation Proclamation and the other with how freed people lived in New York City in Seneca Village, which would eventually become Central Park.

Harriet Tubman. We’ve chosen a few of the many good books about this freedom fighter, trail blazer, and spiritually motivated woman.

History. From Booker T. Washington’s autobiographical Up from Slavery to Julius Lester’s To Be a Slave through to Kadir Nelson’s Heart and Soul: the Story of America and African Americans, you’ll find a number of books that will fascinate your students and make fine choices for book club discussions.

Underground Railroad. One of our truly heroic movements in American history, we’ve selected books that chronicle the work, the danger, and the victories of these freedom fighters, of which Harriet Tubman was a strong, dedicated member. 

WOMEN’S RIGHT TO VOTE

Susan B. Anthony. Often written about, we’ve selected just a few of the many books about this woman who understood the hardships women faced and the necessity for them to be able to vote, to have a voice in government.

More Suffragists. Many women around the globe fought for their right to vote and the fight continues in many countries. We’ve selected several books that fall within our time frame.

Let us know how you are making use of this Bookstorm™. Share your discussions, classroom inclusion, or send us a photo of your library display.

(Thanks to Marsha Qualey and Claire Rudolf Murphy for sharing their considerable knowledge and insight about books for this Bookstorm™.)

Downloadables

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Keystones of the Stone Arch Bridge

Keystones of the Stone Arch Bridge

In downtown Minneapolis, Minnesota, spanning the Mississippi River, there is a “Stone Arch Bridge” that resembles a roman viaduct with its 23 arches. Built at a time when Minneapolis was a primary grain-milling and wood-producing center for the United States, Empire Builder James J. Hill wanted the bridge built to help his railroad reach the […]

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