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Lower School Books for Black History Month

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Barefoot - Pamela Duncan Edwards; Henry Cole (Illustrator)
ISBN: 006027137X
Publication Date: 1997-01-02
In the forest, a group of animals help a runaway slave escape his pursuers

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Ain't Nobody a Stranger to Me - Ann Grifalconi; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786818570
Publication Date: 2007-04-01
A little girl's grandfather recalls how he escaped from slavery with the help of a man who was a member of the Underground Railroad and how he planted an apple orchard in remembrance

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Almost to Freedom - Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; Colin Bootman (Illustrator)
ISBN: 157505342X
Publication Date: 2003-01-08
Tells the story of a young girl's dramatic escape from slavery via the Underground Railroad, from the perspective of her beloved rag doll.

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All Different Now - Angela Johnson; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780689873768
Publication Date: 2014-05-06
In 1865, members of a family start their day as slaves, working in a Texas cotton field, and end it celebrating their freedom on what came to be known as Juneteenth.

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Aunt Harriet's Underground Railroad in the Sky - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0517587688
Publication Date: 1992-11-24
With Harriet Tubman as her guide, Cassie retraces the steps escaping slaves took on the Underground Railroad in order to reunite with her younger brother

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Follow the Drinking Gourd - Jeanette Winter (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0394896947
Publication Date: 2008-01-08
By following the directions in a song, "The Drinking Gourd," taught them by an old sailor named Peg Leg Joe, runaway slaves journey north along the Underground Railroad to freedom in Canada

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Henry's Freedom Box - Ellen Levine; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780439777339
Publication Date: 2007-01-01
A fictionalized account of how in 1849 a Virginia slave, Henry "Box" Brown, escapes to freedom by shipping himself in a wooden crate from Richmond to Philadelphia

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Juneteenth Jamboree - Carole Boston Weatherford; Yvonne Buchanan (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1880000180
Publication Date: 1995-10-01
Cassandra and her family have moved to her parents hometown in Texas, but it doesn't feel like home to Cassandra until she experiences Juneteenth, a Texas tradition celebrating the end of slavery

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Now Let Me Fly - Dolores Johnson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0027476995
Publication Date: 1993-10-29
A fictionalized account of the life of Minna, kidnapped as a girl in Africa, as she endures the harsh life of a slave on a Southern plantation in the 1800s and tries to help her family survive

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Minty - Alan Schroeder; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803718888
Publication Date: 1996-05-01
Young Harriet Tubman, whose childhood name was Minty, dreams of escaping slavery on the Brodas plantation in the late 1820s.

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The Escape of Oney Judge - Emily Arnold McCully (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780374322250
Publication Date: 2007-01-23
Young Oney Judge risks everything to escape a life of slavery in the household of George and Martha Washington and to make her own way as a free black woman

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The Invisible Princess - Faith Ringgold
ISBN: 051780025X
Publication Date: 1998-12-22
Mama and Papa Love have a child, the Invisible Princess, who saves them and the other plantation slaves from their cruel master so that they can all find happiness in the Invisible Village of Peace, Freedom,and love

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Under the Quilt of Night - Deborah Hopkinson; James E. Ransome (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689822278
Publication Date: 2002-01-01
A young girl flees from the farm where she has been worked as a slave and uses the Underground Railroad to escape to freedom in the north.

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Meet Cécile - Denise Lewis Patrick; Christine Kornacki (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781593696603
Publication Date: 2011-08-30
With the help of her white friend Marie-Grace, Cecile, a well-to-do black girl in 1853 New Orleans, plans a secret adventure at a Mardi Gras costume ball

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Dinner at Aunt Connie's House - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1562824260
Publication Date: 1993-10-30
Dinner at Aunt Connie's is even more special than usual when Melody meets not only her new adopted cousin but twelve inspiring African-American women, who step out of their portraits and join the family for dinner

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The Patchwork Path - Bettye Stroud; Erin Susanne Bennett (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763624233
Publication Date: 2005-01-13
While her father leads her toward Canada and away from the plantation where they have been slaves, a young girl thinks of the quilt her mother used to teach her a code that will help guide them to freedom

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Welcome to Addy's World, 1864 - Susan Sinnott
ISBN: 1562477714
Publication Date: 1999-12-01
Describes the conditions of African Americans in the North and the South during and immediately after the Civil War.

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Dinner at Aunt Connie's House - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1562824260
Publication Date: 1993-10-30
Dinner at Aunt Connie's is even more special than usual when Melody meets not only her new adopted cousin but twelve inspiring African-American women, who step out of their portraits and join the family for dinner

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The Hired Hand - Robert D. San Souci; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803712960
Publication Date: 1997-05-01
Old Sam hires a man to help out at his saw mill, and the hired hand also teaches Sam's lazy son a lesson about how to treat people

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Show Way - Jacqueline Woodson; Hudson Talbott (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0399237496
Publication Date: 2005-09-08
The making of "Show ways," or quilts which once served as secret maps for freedom-seeking slaves, is a tradition passed from mother to daughter in the author's family

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Coming on Home Soon - Jacqueline Woodson; Earl Lewis (Illustrator); E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0399237488
Publication Date: 2004-10-07
After Mama takes a job in Chicago during World War II, Ada Ruth stays with Grandma but misses her mother who loves her more than rain and snow

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Vision of Beauty - Kathryn Lasky; Nneka Bennett (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763602531
Publication Date: 2000-01-05
A biography of Sarah Breedlove Walker who, though born in poverty, pioneered in hair and beauty care products for black women, and became a great financial success

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Martin and Mahalia - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Artist)
ISBN: 9780316070133
Publication Date: 2013-07-30
Explores the intersecting lives of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and gospel singer Mahalia Jackson at the historic moment when their voices inspired landmark changes.

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I Have a Dream - Martin Luther King; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375858871
Publication Date: 2012-10-09
Presents the text of the famous speech given on the National Mall in Washington,D.C. by Martin Luther King Jr., complemented by paintings illustrating the ideas of the civil rights leader described.

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Coretta Scott - Ntozake Shange; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061253645
Publication Date: 2009-01-06
Explores the life and career of Coretta Scott King

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Lincoln and Douglass - Nikki Giovanni; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780805082647
Publication Date: 2008-09-30
In an account of the friendship between Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, readers get a glimpse into the shared bond between two great American leaders during a turbulent time in history

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Little Melba and Her Big Trombone - Katheryn Russell-Brown; Frank Morrison (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781600608988
Publication Date: 2014-09-01
A biography of African American musician Melba Doretta Liston, a virtuoso musician who played the trombone and composed and arranged music for many of the great jazz musicians of the twentieth century. Includes afterword, discography, and sources"-- Provided by publisher.

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Frederick's Journey - Doreen Rappaport; London Ladd (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781423114383
Publication Date: 2015-11-03
Shares the life of the abolitionist, including his life as a slave, how he learned to read even though it was illegal for him to do so, and his work speaking out against slavery.

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Gone Crazy in Alabama - Rita Williams-Garcia
ISBN: 9780062215888
Publication Date: 2015-04-21
pending the summer with their grandmother in the rural South, three sisters from Brooklyn discover the surprising reason behind their mother's estrangement from their aunt.

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The Bus Ride - William Miller; John Ward (Illustrator); Rosa Parks (Introduction by)
ISBN: 1880000601
Publication Date: 1998-07-01
A black child protests an unjust law in this story loosely based on Rosa ParksÕ historic decision not to give up her seat to a white passenger on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955

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An Apple for Harriet Tubman - Glennette Tilley Turner; Susan Keeter (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780807503959
Publication Date: 2006-01-01
Biography of a little slave girl whipped for eating an apple, who later grew up to become a famous "conductor" for the underground railroad

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A Voice of Her Own - Kathryn Lasky; Paul Lee (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763602523
Publication Date: 2003-01-01
A biography of an African girl brought to New England as a slave in 1761 who became famous on both sides of the Atlantic as the first Black poet in America.

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Mr. George Baker - Amy Hest; Jon J. Muth (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763612332
Publication Date: 2004-07-08
Harry sits on the porch with Mr. George Baker, an African American who is one hundred years old but can still dance and play the drums, waiting for the school bus that will take them both to the class where they are learning to read.

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Phillis's Big Test - Catherine Clinton; Sean Qualls (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780618737390
Publication Date: 2008-03-21
Story of Phyllis Wheatley of Boston, Mass., a slave, who published a book of poetry in 1773

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Show Way - Jacqueline Woodson; Hudson Talbott (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399237492
Publication Date: 2005-09-08
Soonie's great grandmother was only seven-years-old when sold to the big plantation. A quilt that showed the way to freedom and chronicled the family's history connects the generations, and continues to do so. Idealized illustrations and the poetic text provide an unusual family story.

 

More Great Black History Books

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Bad News for Outlaws - Vaunda Micheaux Nelson; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780822567646
Publication Date: 2009-01-11
Bass Reeves (a former slave who became the first African-American deputy U.S. marshal).

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Josephine - Patricia Hruby Powell; Christian Robinson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781452103143
Publication Date: 2014-01-14
osephine Baker (a dancer, singer, and actress who was also devoted to fighting racism in the United States).

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Last Stop on Market Street - Matt De la Peña; Christian Robinson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399257742
Publication Date: 2015-01-08
A young boy rides the bus across town with his grandmother and learns to appreciate the beauty in everyday thing

 

More Black History Scientist, Mathematicians, and inventors

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Vision of Beauty - Kathryn Lasky; Nneka Bennett (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763602531
Publication Date: 2000-01-05
A biography of Sarah Breedlove Walker who, though born in poverty, pioneered in hair and beauty care products for black women, and became a great financial success.

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Black Inventors - Nathan Aaseng
ISBN: 0816034079
Publication Date: 1997-08-01
Presents the lives and accomplishments of ten African-Americans who excelled in such fields as engineering, fire fighting, agriculture, and medicine.

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African American Women Scientists and Inventors - Otha Richard Sullivan; James Haskins (General Editor)
ISBN: 047138707X
Publication Date: 2001-10-30
Profiles the lives of twenty-six African American women scientists and inventors who made significant contributions from the nineteenth century to modern times

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Talkin' about Bessie - Nikki Grimes; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator); B. Moser (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0439352436
Publication Date: 2002-11-01
A biography of the woman who became the first licensed Afro-American pilot.

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Mae Jemison - Della A. Yannuzzi
ISBN: 0894908138
Publication Date: 1998-05-01
Introduces the life and legacy of the astronaut, who was the first African American woman to travel into space.

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George Washington Carver - Patricia C. McKissack; Fredrick L. McKissack
ISBN: 9780766041028
Publication Date: 2013-01-01
"A simple biography about George Washington Carver for early readers"--

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Dear Benjamin Banneker - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152004173
Publication Date: 1994-10-31

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Whoosh! - Chris Barton; Don Tate (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781580892971
Publication Date: 2016-05-03
You know the Super Soaker. It’s one of top twenty toys of all time. And it was invented entirely by accident. Trying to create a new cooling system for refrigerators and air conditioners, impressive inventor Lonnie Johnson instead created the mechanics for the iconic toy.

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Ada Twist, Scientist - Andrea Beaty; David Roberts (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781419721373
Publication Date: 2016-09-06
Ada Twist is a very curious girl who shows perseverance by asking questions and performing experiments to find things out and understand the world.

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Brilliant African-American Scientists - Jeff C. Young
ISBN: 9781598450835
Publication Date: 2009-12-01
"Read about Benjamin Banneker, George R. Carruthers, Charles R. Drew, Shirley Ann Jackson, Ernest Everett Just, Walter E. Massey, John P. Moon, Daniel Hale Williams, and Jane Cooke Wright"--Provided by publisher.

 

More Courageous Books on Girls You Need to Read

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The Youngest Marcher - Cynthia Levinson; Vanessa Brantley-Newton (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1481400703
Publication Date: 2017-01-17
Audrey Faye Hendricks was confident and bold and brave as can be, and hers is the remarkable and inspiring story of one child's role in the Civil Rights Movement. Meet the youngest known child to be arrested for a civil rights protest in Birmingham, Alabama, 1963, in this moving picture book that proves you're never too little to make a difference.

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Child of the Civil Rights Movement - Paula Young Shelton; Raúl Colón (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0375843140
Publication Date: 2009-12-22
Paula Young Shelton, daughter of Civil Rights activist Andrew Young, brings a child's unique perspective to an important chapter in America's history.

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A Sweet Smell of Roses - Angela Johnson; Eric Velasquez (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689832524
Publication Date: 2005-01-01
There's a sweet, sweet smell in the air as two young girls sneak out of their house, down the street, and across town to where men and women are gathered, ready to march for freedom and justice

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Callie Ann and Mistah Bear - Robert D. San Souci; Don Daily (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803717660
Publication Date: 2000-09-01
A bear disguised as a fine, handsome man comes courting Callie's mother and Callie must outwit the bear to prevent her mother from marrying it

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Flossie and the Fox - Patricia C. McKissack; Rachel Isadora (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803702515
Publication Date: 1986-10-30
A wily fox, notorious for stealing eggs, meets his match when he encounters a bold little girl in the woods who insists upon proof that he is a fox before she will be frightened

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The Story of "Stagecoach" Mary Fields - Robert H. Miller; Cheryl Hanna (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0382243943
Publication Date: 1994-07-01
Black women had to work just as hard as black men to make their way out West. Mary Fields, born a slave in a log cabin in Tennessee, went west in 1884, when she was 52 years old. She ended up in Cascade, Montana, with the nuns for whom she worked. She carried the US mail, ran a restaurant, and earned her name from carrying money throughout Colorado before Wells Fargo Bank.

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Black Women of the Old West - William Loren Katz; Marcia Marshall
ISBN: 9780689319440
Publication Date: 1995-11-01
Examines the role of Black American women in the settling of the Western frontieer

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Bill Pickett - Brian Pinkney (Illustrator); Andrea Davis Pinkney
ISBN: 9780152001001
Publication Date: 1996-10-01
Describes the life and accomplishments of the son of a former slave whose unusual bulldogging style made him a rodeo star.

 

More African American Books

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Liza Lou and the Yeller Belly Swamp - Mercer Mayer (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0027652203
Publication Date: 1984-10-01
With her quick thinking, Liza Lou manages to outwit all the haunts, gobblygooks, witches and devils in the Yeller Belly Swamp.

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Thunder Rose - Jerdine Nolen; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152164723
Publication Date: 2003-09-01
One stormy night, Thunder Rose came into the world with "the power of thunder and lightning coursing through her veins." From this auspicious beginning, the diminutive African-American cowgirl goes on to perform many amazing feats, from constructing thunder bolts and creating lightning balls to capturing cattle rustlers and transforming a pair of tornadoes into rain clouds. -- Description by Jen Hatch.

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The Princess and the Pony - Kate Beaton
ISBN: 9780545637084
Publication Date: 2015-06-30
Prince Pinecone would like a real war horse for her birthday, instead she gets a plump cute pony--but sometimes cutest can be a kind of weapon, especially in a fight with dodge balls, spitballs, and squareballs.

 

Chapter Books for Black History Month

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Elijah of Buxton - Christopher Paul Curtis
ISBN: 0439023440
Publication Date: 2007-09-01
In 1859, eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman, the first free-born child in Buxton, Canada, which is a haven for slaves fleeing the American south, uses his wits and skills to try to bring to justice the lying preacher who has stolen money that was to be used to buy a family's freedom

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Vive la Paris - Esmé Raji Codell
ISBN: 0786851244
Publication Date: 2006-09-26
Fifth-grader Paris learns some lessons about dealing with bullies of all kinds as she wonders how to stop a classmate from beating up her brother at school and as she learns about the Holocaust from her piano teacher, Mrs. Rosen

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Brown Girl Dreaming - Jacqueline Woodson
ISBN: 9780399252518
Publication Date: 2014-08-28
"Jacqueline Woodson, one of today's finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse. Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child's soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson's eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become. Praise for Jacqueline Woodson: Ms. Woodson writes with a sure understanding of the thoughts of young people, offering a poetic, eloquent narrative that is not simply a story. but a mature exploration of grown-up issues and self-discovery.""-The New York Times Book Review""-- Provided by publisher.

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The Mighty Miss Malone - Christopher Paul Curtis
ISBN: 9780385734912
Publication Date: 2012-01-10
With love and determination befitting the "world's greatest family," twelve-year-old Deza Malone, her older brother Jimmie, and their parents endure tough times in Gary, Indiana, and later Flint, Michigan, during the Great Depression.

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The Voice That Challenged a Nation - Russell Freedman
ISBN: 0618159762
Publication Date: 2004-05-25
An account of the life of a talented and determined artist who left her mark on musical and social history is drawn from Anderson's own writing and other contemporary accounts.

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Freedom Walkers - Russell Freedman
ISBN: 9780823420315
Publication Date: 2006-10-01
Covers the events surrounding and including the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the end of segregation on buses.

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The Education of Mary - Ann Rinaldi; Peter Jay Fernandez (Narrated by); Caroline Clay (Narrated by)
ISBN: 9781402524783
Publication Date: 2003-05-08
In 1832, Prudance Crandall begins admitting black girls to her exclusive Connecticut School, scandalizing white society causing her arrest and closing of her school.

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Celeste's Harlem Renaissance - Eleanora E. Tate
ISBN: 9780316523943
Publication Date: 2007-04-01
In 1921, thirteen-year-old Celeste leaves North Carolina to stay with her glamorous Aunt Valentina in Harlem, New York, where she discovers the vibrant Harlem Renaissance in full swing, even though her aunt's life is not exactly what she was led to believe

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Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry - Mildred D. Taylor; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803726473
Publication Date: 2001-01-01
An African American family living in the South during the 1930s is faced with prejudice and discrimination which their children don't understand

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The Land - Mildred D. Taylor; Max Ginsburg (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803719507
Publication Date: 2001-09-01
Prequel to: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

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P. S. Be Eleven - Rita Williams-Garcia
ISBN: 9780061938627
Publication Date: 2013-05-21
The Gaither sisters are back in Brooklyn, where changes large and small come to their household as they grow up during the turbulent 1960s.

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Stella by Starlight - Sharon M. Draper; Sarah Jane Coleman (Cover Design by)
ISBN: 9781442494978
Publication Date: 2015-01-06
When a burning cross set by the Klan causes panic and fear in 1932 Bumblebee, North Carolina, fifth-grader Stella must face prejudice and find the strength to demand change in her segregated town.

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One Crazy Summer - Rita Williams-Garcia
ISBN: 0060760907
Publication Date: 2011-12-27
In the summer of 1968, after travellng from Brooklyn to Oakland, California, to spend a month with the mother they barely know, eleven-year-old Delphine and her two younger sisters arrive to a cold welcome as they discover that their mother, a dedicated poet and printer, is resentful of the intrusion of their visit and wants them to attend a nearby Black Panther summer camp

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The Lions of Little Rock - Kristin Levine
ISBN: 9780142424353
Publication Date: 2013-01-10
Two girls separated by race form an unbreakable bond during the tumultuous integration of Little Rock schools in 1958

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Her Stories - Virginia Hamilton; Leo Dillon (Illustrator); Diane Dillon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590473700
Publication Date: 1995-11-01
Collection of 19 folktales, legends, and true stories celebrating the heroic cunning, patience, and courage of African-American women and girls.

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Make Way for Dyamonde Daniel - Nikki Grimes; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399251757
Publication Date: 2009-05-14
Spunky third-grader Dyamonde Daniel misses her old neighborhood, but when she befriends a boy named Free, another new student at school, she finally starts to feel at home.

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Rich - Nikki Grimes; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399251764
Publication Date: 2009-10-29
Free is excited about a local poetry contest because of its cash prize, but when he and Dyamonde befriend a classmate who is homeless and living in a shelter, they rethink what it means to be rich or poor

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Halfway to Perfect - Nikki Grimes; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399251788
Publication Date: 2012-07-05
Despite what Dyamonde and Free say, Damaria worries that she is getting fat, until a classmate's problem with diabetes causes her to change her thoughts about body image

 

February is Black History Month!

President Obama & family portrait  Martin Luther King, Jr.   

February is African-American History Month, better known as Black History Month! How did it come about? In 1915, Dr. Carter G. Woodson founded the Association for the Study of African-American Life and History in response to the lack of information about the accomplishments of African-Americans. He established Negro History Week in 1926, and 50 years later it became a month long celebration in the United States 

The resources on this page connect you to information about African-American history, culture, and influential people. Learn something new - check out Black History Books this week!

Pictured above: Barack Obama & family portrait, U.S. President & family; Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., civil rights activist; 

 

Origins of Black History Month Video

This video was created by the History Channel, owned by A&E Television Networks.

 

More Black History Books!

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The Story of Ruby Bridges - Robert Coles; George Ford (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590439677
Publication Date: 1995-02-01
For months six-year-old Ruby Bridges must confront the hostility of white parents when she becomes the first African American girl to integrate Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans in 1960

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Let It Shine - Ashley Bryan (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689847327
Publication Date: 2007-01-09
This little light of mine -- When the saints go marching in -- He's got the whole world in His hands
Illustrated version of three well-known hymnm

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Gloria Rising - Ann Cameron; Lis Toft (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0374326754
Publication Date: 2002-03-21
A chance meeting with a woman astronaut encourages Gloria to try to be her best self, even with her difficult fourth-grade teacher, Mrs. Yardley

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Gloria's Way - Ann Cameron; Lis Toft (Illustrator); A. Cameron
ISBN: 0374326703
Publication Date: 2000-03-09
Gloria shares special times with her mother and father and with her friends Julian, Huey, and Latisha

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White Socks Only - Evelyn Coleman; Tyrone Geter (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0807589551
Publication Date: 1996-03-01
Grandma tells the story about her first trip alone into town during the days when segregation still existed in Mississippi

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Full, Full, Full of Love - Trish Cooke; Paul Howard (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763618519
Publication Date: 2003-02-01
For young Jay Jay, Sunday dinner at Gran's house is full of hugs and kisses, tasty dishes, all kinds of fishes, happy faces, and love.

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Jamela's Dress - Niki Daly (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0374336679
Publication Date: 1999-04-09
Jamela gets in trouble when she takes the expensive material intended for a new dress for Mama, parades it in the street, and allows it to become dirty and torn

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Happy Birthday, Jamela! - Niki Daly
ISBN: 0374328420
Publication Date: 2006-08-08
Jamela wants sparkly "princess shoes" to go with her new birthday dress, but Mama makes her buy practical school shoes instead

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Pretty Salma - Niki Daly (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780618723454
Publication Date: 2007-04-15
In this version of "Little Red Riding Hood," set in Ghana, a young girl fails to heed Granny's warning about the dangers of talking to strangers

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Jazz on a Saturday Night - Leo Dillon (Illustrator); Diane Dillon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590478931
Publication Date: 2007-09-01
Synopsis: If you have ever been lucky enough to hear great jazz, then you will understand the pure magic of this book. Leo and Diane Dillon use bright colors and patterns that make music skip off the page in this toe-tapping homage to many jazz greats. From Miles Davis and Charlie Parker to
Ella Fitzgerald.

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The Patchwork Quilt - Valerie Flournoy; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803700970
Publication Date: 1985-03-29
Using scraps cut from the family's old clothing, Tanya helps her grandmother and mother make a beautiful quilt that tells the story of her family's life

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Tanya's Reunion - Valerie Flournoy; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803716044
Publication Date: 1995-09-01
When she and her grandmother go to help with preparations for a big family reunion, Tanya learns about the history of the farm in Virginia where Grandma grew up

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The Patchwork Path - Bettye Stroud; Erin Susanne Bennett (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0763624233
Publication Date: 2005-01-13
While her father leads her toward Canada and away from the plantation where they have been slaves, a young girl thinks of the quilt her mother used to teach her a code that will help guide them to freedom

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Barack Obama - Nikki Grimes; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781416971443
Publication Date: 2008-08-26
When David asks his mother about the man on television, she tells him the story of Barack Obama, discussing his childhood in Hawaii and Indonesia, his parents' divorce, and his desire to help others.

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First Family - Deborah Hopkinson; A. G. Ford (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061896804
Publication Date: 2009-12-22
Follow a day in the life of the Obamas.

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Heart and Soul - Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061730740
Publication Date: 2011-09-27
An simple introduction to African-American history, from Revolutionary-era slavery up to the election of President Obama
Subject-Personal Name :

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Rosa - Nikki Giovanni; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0805071067
Publication Date: 2005-10-01
On December 1, 1955, Rosa boarded a Montgomery, Alabama city bus and refused to give up her seat to a white man, an act that ignited a movement that changed modern history.

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I Am Rosa Parks - Rosa Parks; James Haskins; Wil Clay (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803712065
Publication Date: 1997-02-01
Easy reader biography on Rosa Parks

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If a Bus Could Talk - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689818920
Publication Date: 1999-11-01
A biography of the African American woman and civil rights worker whose refusal to give up her seat on a bus led to a boycott which lasted more than a year in Montgomery, Alabama.

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Her Stories - Virginia Hamilton; Leo Dillon (Illustrator); Diane Dillon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590473700
Publication Date: 1995-11-01
Collection of 19 folktales, legends and true stories celebrating heroic cunning, patience, and courage of African American women

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Many Thousand Gone - Virginia Hamilton; Leo Dillon (Illustrator); Diane Dillon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0394928733
Publication Date: 2002-01-02
Recounts the journey of Black slaves to freedom via the underground railroad, an extended group of people who helped fugitive slaves in many ways

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Bruh Rabbit and the Tar Baby Girl - Virginia Hamilton; James E. Ransome (Illustrator)
ISBN: 059047376X
Publication Date: 2003-10-01
In this retelling, using Gullah speech, of a familiar story the wily Brer Rabbit outwits Brer Fox who has set out to trap him.

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Bluish - Virginia Hamilton; Leo Dillon (Illustrator); Diane Dillon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590288792
Publication Date: 1999-10-01

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Princess Grace - Mary Hoffman; Cornelius Van Wright (Illustrator); Ying-Hwa Hu (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780803732605
Publication Date: 2008-01-10
Grace wants to participate in her community festival's princess float, but first she must decide what sort of a princess she wants to be--from an African princess in kente cloth robes to a floaty pink fairy tale princess

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Henry's Freedom Box - Ellen Levine; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780439777339
Publication Date: 2007-01-01
A fictionalized account of how in 1849 a Virginia slave, Henry "Box" Brown, escapes to freedom by shipping himself in a wooden crate from Richmond to Philadelphia

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Drita, My Homegirl - Jenny Lombard
ISBN: 0399243801
Publication Date: 2006-03-16
When ten-year-old Drita and her family, refugees from Kosovo, move to New York, Drita is teased about not speaking English well, but after a popular student named Maxine is forced to learn about Kosovo as a punishment for teasing Drita, the two girls soon bond

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Molly Bannaky - Alice McGill; Chris K. Soentpiet
ISBN: 039572287X
Publication Date: 1999-09-27
Relates how Benjamin Banneker's grandmother journeyed from England to Maryland in the late seventeenth century, worked as an indentured servant, began a farm of her own, and married a freed slave

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Goin' Someplace Special - Patricia C. McKissack; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689818858
Publication Date: 2001-09-01
In segregated 1950s Nashville, a young African American girl braves a series of indignities and obstacles to get to one of the few integrated places in town: the public library

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Little Red Riding Hood - Jerry Pinkney
ISBN: 9780316013550
Publication Date: 2007-10-01
A sweet little girl meets a hungry wolf in the forest while on her way to visit her grandmother

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Fishing Day - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Shane W. Evans (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0786826142
Publication Date: 2003-11-01
When Reenie and her mother, who are African Americans, go fishing, Reenie decides to share the secret of their success with their needy white neighbors.

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Leola and the Honeybears - Melodye Rosales (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590383582
Publication Date: 1999-10-01
An African American version of Goldilocks and the three bears

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Freedom on the Menu - Carole Boston Weatherford; Jerome Lagarrigue (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803728603
Publication Date: 2004-12-29
The 1960 civil rights sit-ins at the Woolworth's lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina, are seen through the eyes of a young Southern black girl

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Moses - Carole Boston Weatherford; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0786851759
Publication Date: 2006-09-01
Describes Tubman's spiritual journey as she hears the voice of God guiding her north to freedom on that very first trip to escape the brutal practice of forced servitude. Tubman would make nineteen subsequent trips back south, never being caught, but none as profound as this first one

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Each Kindness - Jacqueline Woodson; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399246524
Publication Date: 2012-10-02
When Ms. Albert teaches a lesson on kindness, Chloe realizes that she and her friends have been wrong in making fun of new student Maya's shabby clothes and refusing to play with her.

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Zora Neale Hurston - Patricia C. McKissack; Fredrick L. McKissack
ISBN: 0894903160
Publication Date: 1992-07-01
A tribute to the life and achievements of the Civil Rights activist and examines her life as an author.

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Lulu and the Dog from the Sea - Hilary McKay; Priscilla Lamont (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780807548202
Publication Date: 2013-03-01
Seven-year-old Lulu and her cousin think their vacation house is the most perfect place ever until they find a trouble-prone, stray dog living on the beach.

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Come On, Rain! - Karen Hesse; Jon J. Muth (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590331256
Publication Date: 1999-03-01
A young girl eagerly awaits a coming rainstorm to bring relief from the oppressive summer heat

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Lulu and the Duck in the Park - Hilary McKay; Priscilla Lamont (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780807548080
Publication Date: 2012-09-01
A young girl who loves animals brings an abandoned duck egg to school, even though her teacher has banned her from bringing animals to school ever again.

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Come On, Rain! - Karen Hesse; Jon J. Muth (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590331256
Publication Date: 1999-03-01
A young girl eagerly awaits a coming rainstorm to bring relief from the oppressive summer heat

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Lulu and the Rabbit Next Door - Hilary McKay; Priscilla Lamont (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780807548165
Publication Date: 2014-03-01
When Lulu's next-door neighbor doesn't seem to be looking after his rabbit properly, Lulu and her cousin Mellie devise a scheme to make him pay more attention to his pet"-

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28 Days - Charles R. Smith; Shane W. Evans (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781596438200
Publication Date: 2015-01-13
A picture book look at many of the men and women who revolutionized life for African Americans throughout history"--

Lulu Goes to Witch School - Jane O'Connor
ISBN: 0606047344
Publication Date: 1991-01-01

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Two Friends: Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass - Dean Robbins; Sean Qualls (Illustrator); Selina Alko (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780545399968
Publication Date: 2016-01-05
This story imagines what it was like when Susan B. Anthony and Frederick Douglass got together for a cup of tea and discussed their struggle for civil rights.

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The Other Side - Jacqueline Woodson; Earl Lewis (Illustrator); E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0399231161
Publication Date: 2001-01-15
Two girls, one white and one black, gradually get to know each other as they sit on the fence that divides their town

 

KATHERINE JOHNSON NASA MATHEMATICIAN

 

PERFORMERS AND MUSICIANS

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Little Melba and Her Big Trombone - Katheryn Russell-Brown; Frank Morrison (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781600608988
Publication Date: 2014-09-01
"A biography of African American musician Melba Doretta Liston, a virtuoso musician who played the trombone and composed and arranged music for many of the great jazz musicians of the twentieth century. Includes afterword, discography, and sources"--

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When Marian Sang - Pam Munoz Ryan; Brian Selznick (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780439269674
Publication Date: 2002-10-01
Marian Anderson is best known for her historic concert at the Lincoln Memorial in 1939, which drew an integrated crowd of 75,000 people in pre-Civil Rights America.

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Leontyne Price - Carole Boston Weatherford; Raúl Colón (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375856068
Publication Date: 2014-12-23
A stunning picture-book biography of iconic African American opera star Leontyne Price

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Ella Fitzgerald - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0786805684
Publication Date: 2002-04-01
Ella Fitzgerald began her life as a singer on the stage of the Apollo Theater when she was just seventeen years old. Her rich voice and vocal innovations brought her fame and a remarkable career than spanned half a century and won her generations of fans around the world.

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Skit-Scat Raggedy Cat - Roxane Orgill; Sean Qualls (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780763617332
Publication Date: 2010-08-24
A swinging bio of young Ella Fitzgerald, who pushed through the toughest of times to become one of America’s most beloved jazz singers.

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Sophisticated Ladies - Leslie Gourse; Martin French (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780525471981
Publication Date: 2007-01-18
Bessie Smith -- Ethel Waters ,Billie Holiday -

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A Tisket, A Tasket - Ella Fitzgerald; Van Alexander; Ora Eitan (Illustrator); Ella Fitzgerald
ISBN: 0399232060
Publication Date: 2003-01-27
A boy in New York City drops his green and yellow basket and later sees a little girl carrying it around.

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God Bless the Child - Billie Holiday; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator); Arthur Herzog
ISBN: 0060287977
Publication Date: 2003-12-23
A swing spiritual based on the proverb "God blessed the child that's got his own"

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Martin and Mahalia - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Artist)
ISBN: 9780316070133
Publication Date: 2013-07-30
On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, and his strong voice and powerful message were joined and lifted in song by world-renowned gospel singer Mahalia Jackson

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Duke Ellington - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0786801786
Publication Date: 1999-03-03
Ragtime days, biography of Duke Ellington the prince of piano playing and his rise to Carnegie Hall.

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If I Only Had a Horn - Roxane Orgill; Leonard Jenkins (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0395759196
Publication Date: 1997-09-29
Relates how the famous jazz trumpeter began his musical career, as a poor boy in New Orleans, by singing songs on street corners and playing a battered cornet in a marching band.

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The Little Piano Girl - Maryann MacDonald; Ann Ingalls; Giselle Potter (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780618959747
Publication Date: 2010-01-18
A child prodigy at the piano sprinkles her music with a little jazz. Based on the life of the twentieth-century jazz musician, Mary Lou Williams

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The Piano - William Miller; Susan Keeter (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1880000989
Publication Date: 2000-06-01
A young black girl's love of music leads her to a job in the home of an older white woman who not only teaches her to play the piano but also about caring for others

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Ragtime Tumpie - Alan Schroeder; Bernie Fuchs (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0316774979
Publication Date: 1989-10-01
Tumpie, a young black girl who will later become famous as the dancer Josephine Baker, longs to find the opportunity to dance amid the poverty and vivacious street life of St. Louis in the early 1900s

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Josephine - Patricia Hruby Powell; Christian Robinson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781452103143
Publication Date: 2014-01-14
"In exuberant verse and stirring pictures, Patricia Hruby Powell and Christian Robinson create an extraordinary portrait of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate Josephine Baker, the woman who worked her way from the slums of St. Louis to the grandest stages in the world. Meticulously researched by both author and artist, Josephine's powerful story of struggle and triumph is an inspiration and a spectacle, just like the legend herself"--From the publi

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Firebird - Misty Copeland; Christopher Myers (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399166150
Publication Date: 2014-09-04
American Ballet Theater soloist Misty Copeland encourages a young ballet student, with brown skin like her own, by telling her that she, too, had to learn basic steps and how to be graceful when she was starting out, and that some day, with practice and dedication, the little girl will become a firebird, too. Includes author's note about dancers who led her to find her voice.

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Alvin Ailey - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786810772
Publication Date: 1995-09-05
Describes the life, dancing, and choreography of Alvin Ailey, who created his own modern dance company to explore the black experience.

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A Young Dancer - Valerie Gladstone; Jose Ivey (Photographer)
ISBN: 9780805082333
Publication Date: 2009-03-31
In descriptive words and striking photographs, this informative picture book provides fascinating insight into the world of dance through the voice of one very talented young performer

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Trombone Shorty - Troy Andrews; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781419714658
Publication Date: 2015-04-14
A Grammy-nominated headliner for the New Orleans Jazz Fest describes his childhood in Tremé and how he came to be a bandleader by age six.

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Mimi's Tutu - Tynia Thomassie; Jan Spivey Gilchrist (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590440209
Publication Date: 1996-02-01
Little Mimi enjoys going to African dance class, but she longs for a tutu for herself.

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Ruby Sings the Blues - Niki Daly
ISBN: 9781582349954
Publication Date: 2005-06-04
Ruby's voice annoys everyone around her, until she learns to control her volume with help of her new jazz musician friends.

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Violet's Music - Angela Johnson; Laura Huliska-Beith (Illustrator); Huliska-beith Laura (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803727402
Publication Date: 2004-01-05
From the days she banged he rattle in the crib, Violet has been looking for friends to share her love of music.

 

AFRICAN AMERICAN LEADERS, POLITICIANS, WHO FOUGHT FOR JUSTICE

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Lincoln and Douglass - Nikki Giovanni; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780805082647
Publication Date: 2008-09-30
In an account of the friendship between Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass, readers get a glimpse into the shared bond between two great American leaders during a turbulent time in history

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Frederick's Journey - Doreen Rappaport; London Ladd (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781423114383
Publication Date: 2015-11-03
Chronicles the life and times of the former slave and abolitionist, including his escape to freedom and his public addresses.

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A Picture Book of Sojourner Truth - David A. Adler; Gershom Griffith (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0823410722
Publication Date: 1994-03-01
An introduction to the life of the woman born into slavery who became a well-known abolitionist and crusader for the rights of African Americans in the United States.

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Harriet Tubman, Secret Agent - Thomas B. Allen; Carla Bauer (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0792278895
Publication Date: 2006-10-10
Provides a biography of this courageous ex-slave who worked to establish the Underground Railroad, became a Union Army spy, and helped more than seven hundred slaves find their way to freedom in the North.

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I Have a Dream - Martin Luther King; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375858871
Publication Date: 2012-10-09
By: King, Martin Luther, Jr., 1929-1968
Presents the text of the famous speech given on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. by Martin Luther King, Jr., complemented by paintings illustrating the ideals the civil rights leader described

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Coretta Scott - Ntozake Shange; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061253645
Publication Date: 2009-01-06
Examines the life of Martin Luther King's wife, Coretta, who in her own right, was a civil rights pioneer who experienced the injustices of the segregated South and who continued her husband's mission after his assassination.

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A Picture Book of Thurgood Marshall - David A. Adler; Robert Casilla (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780823413089
Publication Date: 1997-09-01
Follows the life of the first African-American to serve as a judge on the United States Supreme Court.

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Rosa - Nikki Giovanni; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0805071067
Publication Date: 2005-10-01
A biography of the black woman whose refusal to give up her seat on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955, led to a bus boycott that helped galvanize the civil rights movement.

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I Am Rosa Parks - Rosa Parks; James Haskins; Wil Clay (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803712065
Publication Date: 1997-02-01
The black woman whose acts of civil disobedience led to the 1956 Supreme Court order to desegregate buses in Montgomery, Alabama, explains what she did and why.

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If a Bus Could Talk - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689818920
Publication Date: 1999-11-01
A biography of the African American woman and civil rights worker whose refusal to give up her seat on a bus led to a boycott which lasted more than a year in Montgomery, Alabama.

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Let It Shine - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Stephen Alcorn (Illustrator)
ISBN: 015201005X
Publication Date: 2000-09-01
Profiles ten African American women including Rosa Parks, Harriet Tubman, and Shirley Chisholm, whose courageous acts against oppression made them leaders in the battle for civil rights.

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The Story of Ruby Bridges - Robert Coles; George Ford (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590439677
Publication Date: 1995-02-01
For months six-year-old Ruby Bridges must confront the hostility of white parents when she becomes the first African American girl to integrate Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans in 1960.

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Through My Eyes - Ruby Bridges
ISBN: 0590189239
Publication Date: 1999-09-01
Ruby Bridges recounts the story of her involvement, as a six-year-old, in the integration of her school in New Orleans in 1960.

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Mary McLeod Bethune - Susan Evento
ISBN: 9780516217208
Publication Date: 2004-03-01
An introduction to the life of Mary McLeod Bethune, an African American educator who fought poverty and discrimination, founded a college, and worked with Franklin Delano Roosevelt to improve opportunities for blacks.

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Voice of Freedom - Carole Boston Weatherford; Ekua Holmes (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780763665319
Publication Date: 2015-08-04
Fannie Lou Hamer, a champion of equal voting rights.

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Barack Obama - Peter Hicks
ISBN: 9781448832873
Publication Date: 2011-01-15
Traces the life of the forty-fourth President of the United States, from his childhood in Hawaii and Harvard education to his accomplishments as a community organizer, Senator, and the president.

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Moses - Carole Boston Weatherford; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786851751
Publication Date: 2006-08-08
Tubman's spiritual journey as she hears the voice of God guiding her North to freedom on that very first trip to escape the brutal practice of forced servitude.

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Michelle Obama: Meet the First Lady - David Bergen Brophy
ISBN: 9780061957390
Publication Date: 2009-06-16
Presents the life and accomplishments of the First Lady of the United States, from her childhood in Chicago and her career as a lawyer to her marriage to Barack Obama and her initiatives in the White House.

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Martin's Big Words - Doreen Rappaport; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0786807148
Publication Date: 2001-10-01
A picture book biography introduces the ideas and accomplishments of a gifted and influential speaker by using some of his own words to tell the story.

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Malcolm Little - Ilyasah Shabazz; A. G. Ford (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781442412163
Publication Date: 2014-01-07
Malcolm X grew to be one of America’s most influential figures. But first, he was a boy named Malcolm Little. Written by his daughter, this inspiring picture book biography celebrates a vision of freedom and justice.

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Preaching to the Chickens - Jabari Asim; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399168567
Publication Date: 2016-10-11
Critically acclaimed author Jabari Asim and Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator E. B. Lewis give readers a fascinating glimpse into the boyhood of Civil Rights leader John Lewis.

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The Princess of the Press - Angela Shelf Medearis
ISBN: 0525674934
Publication Date: 1997-10-01
A biography of the journalist, newspaper owner, and suffragette who campaigned for civil rights and founded the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People

 

More African American Books

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Abby Takes a Stand - Gordon C. James (Illustrator); Patricia C. McKissack
ISBN: 0670060119
Publication Date: 2005-07-21
Gee recalls for her grandchildren what happened in 1960 in Nashville, Tennessee, when she, aged ten, passed out flyers while her cousin and other adults held sit-ins at restaurants and lunch counters to protest segregation

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Granddaddy's Turn - Michael S. Bandy; Eric Stein; James Ransome (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780763665937
Publication Date: 2015-07-14
A young boy witnesses his proud, hardworking grandfather dress in his best suit and go to town so that he can vote for the first time.

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This Is the Rope - Jacqueline Woodson; James Ransome (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399239861
Publication Date: 2013-08-29
A rope passed down through the generations frames an African American family's story as they journey north during the time of the Great Migration.

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Goin' Someplace Special - Patricia C. McKissack; Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689818858
Publication Date: 2001-09-01
In segregated 1950s Nashville, a young African American girl braves a series of indignities and obstacles to get to one of the few integrated places in town: the public library

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Sugar Plums to the Rescue! - Whoopi Goldberg; Maryn Roos (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781423120834
Publication Date: 2011-05-03
Triplets Jessica, JoAnn, and Jerzey and their friends in ballet class try to keep the building that houses The Nutcracker School from being torn down, while also trying to rescue a stray kitten.

 

More Great African American Picture Books

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Lily Brown's Paintings - Angela Johnson; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780439782258
Publication Date: 2007-01-01
When Lily Brown paints, she imagines all sorts of fantastic things in the scenes that she sees every day.

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Violet's Music - Angela Johnson; Laura Huliska-Beith (Illustrator); Huliska-beith Laura (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803727402
Publication Date: 2004-01-05
From the days she banged her rattle in the crib, Violet has been looking for friends to share her love of music.

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A Million Fish... More or Less - Patricia C. McKissack; Dena Schutzer (Illustrator)
ISBN: 067980692X
Publication Date: 2016-06-14
A boy learns that the truth is often stretched on the Bayou Clapateaux, and gets the chance to tell his own version of a bayou tale when he goes fishing.

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Let It Shine - Ashley Bryan (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780689847325
Publication Date: 2007-01-09
Illustrated versions of three well-known hymns.

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John Coltrane's Giant Steps - Chris Raschka (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689845987
Publication Date: 2002-07-01
John Coltrane's musical composition is performed by a box,snowflake, some rain drops and a kitten.

 

More African Amerian Pioneers in Science and Math

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Hidden Figures - Margot Lee Shetterly
ISBN: 9780062662378
Publication Date: 2016-11-29
Now in a special new edition perfect for young readers, this is the amazing true story of four African-American female mathematicians at NASA who helped achieve some of the greatest moments in our space program.

Web Resources and Links African American History

 

More Lower School Books

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Grace for President - Kelly DiPucchio; LeUyen Pham (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786839193
Publication Date: 2008-02-26
After finding out there has never been a female U.S. president, Grace decides to run in her school's mock election, where she learns about the American electoral system and sets out to be the best person for the job even though her opponent, Thomas, seems to be winning all the boys' votes

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Black, White, Just Right! - Marguerite W. Davol; Irene Trivas (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0807507857
Publication Date: 1993-01-01
A girl explains how her parents are different in color, tastes in art and food, and pet preferences, and how she herself is different too but just right

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Barack - Jonah Winter; A. G. Ford (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061703928
Publication Date: 2008-09-30
A picture book biography of African-American senator and presidential candidate

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Barack Obama - Roberta Edwards; Ken Call (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780448447995
Publication Date: 2007-08-16
A brief easy reader biography of Senator Barack Obama

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Meet Danitra Brown - Nikki Grimes; Floyd Cooper (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0688120733
Publication Date: 1994-04-01
A story of two little girls' friendship, told in a series of simple poems

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Danitra Brown, Class Clown - Nikki Grimes; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0688172903
Publication Date: 2005-07-26
In this story told in a series of rhyming poems, Zuri faces her fears about starting a new school year with the help of free-spirited best friend, Danitra

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I Love My Hair! - Natasha Tarpley; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0316522759
Publication Date: 1998-02-01
A young African American girl describes the different, wonderful ways she can wear her hair

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The Chicken-Chasing Queen of Lamar County - Janice N. Harrington; Shelley Jackson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0374312516
Publication Date: 2007-03-20
A young farm girl tries to catch her favorite chicken, until she learns something about the hen that makes her change her ways

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Nettie Jo's Friends - Patricia C. McKissack; Scott Cook (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780394891583
Publication Date: 1989-03-18
Nettie Jo desperately needs a needle to sew a new wedding dress for her beloved doll, but the three animals she helps during her search do not seem inclined to give her their assistance in return

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Flossie and the Fox - Patricia C. McKissack; Rachel Isadora (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0803702515
Publication Date: 1986-10-30
A wily fox, notorious for stealing eggs, meets his match when he encounters a bold little girl in the woods who insists upon proof that he is a fox before she will be frightened

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My Best Friend - Earl Lewis (Illustrator); Mary Ann Rodman; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0670059897
Publication Date: 2005-05-05
Six-year-old Lily has a best friend all picked out for play group day, but unfortunately the differences between first-graders and second-graders are sometimes very large

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Jazz Baby - Lisa Wheeler; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780152025229
Publication Date: 2007-11-01
Baby and his family make some jazzy music

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Squashed in the Middle - Elizabeth Winthrop; Pat Cummings (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0805064974
Publication Date: 2005-05-01
When Daisy, a middle child, is invited to spend the night at her friend's house, her family finally pays attention to her

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Pecan Pie Baby - Jacqueline Woodson; Sophie Blackall (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399239878
Publication Date: 2010-10-28
When Mama's pregnancy draws attention away from Gia, she worries that the special bond they share will disappear forever once the baby is born

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Ginger Brown - Sharon Dennis Wyeth
ISBN: 0679954376
Publication Date: 1996-06-11
When her parents get a divorce, six-year-old Ginger lives for a while with each set of grandparents and begins to understand her mixed background and her new family situation

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Nikki and Deja - Karen English; Laura Freeman (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780618752386
Publication Date: 2007-12-17
When an arrogant new girl comes to school, third-graders and best friends Nikki and Deja decide to form a club that would exclude her but find the results not what they expected

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Birthday Blues - Karen English; Laura Freeman (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780618977871
Publication Date: 2009-01-19
As her eighth birthday approaches, Deja's biggest concern is whether her father will attend her party, until her aunt is called away on business and a classmate schedules a "just because party" on the same afternoon.

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I Like Myself! - Karen Beaumont; David Catrow (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152020136
Publication Date: 2004-05-01
In rhyming text, a child expresses her self-esteem and exults in her unique identity.

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Ruby Lee and Me - Shannon Hitchcock
ISBN: 0545782309
Publication Date: 2016-01-05
When a formerly segregated North Carolina town hires its first African-American teacher in 1969, two girls--one black, one white--confront the prejudice that challenges their friendship.

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Leola and the Honeybears - Melodye Rosales (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0590383582
Publication Date: 1999-10-01
An African American version of Goldilocks and the three bears.

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The Chicken-Chasing Queen of Lamar County - Janice N. Harrington; Shelley Jackson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780374312510
Publication Date: 2007-03-20
Meet the Chicken-Chasing Queen of Lamar County. Almost the first thing she thinks about every morning is chasing the farm's chickens. She sneaks up on them real slow, then . SQUAWK! But the Chicken- Chasing Queen is about to learn why the prettiest hen on the farm doesn't want to get caught.

 

4th Grade and Up Books for Black History

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Freedom Riders - Ann Bausum
ISBN: 0792241738
Publication Date: 2005-12-27
Offers the true account of two young men who took the risk to venture into the segregated South at the peak of the Civil Rights era to take part as Freedom Riders and fight for equality for all.

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Sahara Special - Esmé Raji Codell
ISBN: 0786807938
Publication Date: 2003-04-01
Struggling with school and her feelings since her father left, Sahara gets a fresh start with a new and unique teacher who supports her writing talents and the individuality of each of her classmates.

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The Watsons Go to Birmingham 1963 - Christopher Paul Curtis
ISBN: 0385321759
Publication Date: 1995-09-01
The ordinary interactions and everyday routines of the Watsons, an African American family living in Flint, Michigan, are drastically changed after they go to visit Grandma in Alabama in the summer of 1966.

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Mr. Chickee's Messy Mission - Christopher Paul Curtis
ISBN: 9780385327756
Publication Date: 2007-01-23
Flint Future Detective Club members Steven Carter and his friends Russell and Richelle follow RussellÕs dog, Rodney Rodent, into a mural to chase a demonic-looking gnome, only to find the mysterious Mr. Chickee on the other side

 

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN SPORTS

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Wilma Unlimited - Kathleen Krull; David Diaz (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152012672
Publication Date: 1996-04-01
A biography of the African-American woman who overcame crippling polio as a child to become the first woman to win three gold medals in track in a single Olympics.

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The Quickest Kid in Clarksville - Pat Zietlow Miller; Frank Morrison (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781452129365
Publication Date: 2016-02-09
Growing up in the segregated town of Clarksville, Tennessee, in the 1960s, Alta's family cannot afford to buy her new sneakers--but she still plans to attend the parade celebrating her hero Wilma Rudolph's three Olympic gold medals.

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Teammates - Peter Golenbock; Paul Bacon (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0152006036
Publication Date: 1990-03-15
Describes the racial prejudice experienced by Jackie Robinson when he joined the Brooklyn Dodgers and became the first black player in Major League baseball and depicts the acceptance and support he received from his white teammate Pee Wee Reese

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We Are the Ship - Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786808328
Publication Date: 2008-01-08
Using an "Everyman" player as his narrator, Kadir Nelson tells the story of Negro League baseball from its beginnings in the 1920s through the decline after Jackie Robinson crossed over to the majors in 1947. Illustrations from oil paintings by artist Kadir Nelson

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She Loved Baseball - Audrey Vernick (Illustrator); Don Tate (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061349201
Publication Date: 2010-10-19
The first (and, so far, only) woman to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame was African-American Effa Manley. Manley loved baseball as a girl, and she grew up to work in the sport, breaking ground as a business manager and co-owner of the Newark Eagles Negro League team, where she fought for racial equality. -- Description by Dawn Towery.

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Catching the Moon - Crystal Hubbard; Randy Duburke (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781584302438
Publication Date: 2005-09-01
A picture book biography highlighting a pivotal event in the childhood of African American baseball player Marcenia "Toni Stone" Lyle Alberga, the woman who broke baseball's gender barrier by becoming the first female roster member of a professional Negro League team"--Provided by publisher.

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Mo'ne Davis: Remember My Name - Mo'ne Davis
ISBN: 9780062397546
Publication Date: 2016-03-01
The first female pitcher to win a game in the Little League World Series describes her life and athletic exploits.

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Nothing but Trouble - Sue Stauffacher; Greg Couch (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375934087
Publication Date: 2007-08-14
A biography of Althea Gibson, the first black tennis player to ever compete in what is now known as the U.S. Open, and in the Lawn Tennis Championships in Wimbledon, England

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Playing to Win - Karen Deans; Elbrite Brown (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780823419265
Publication Date: 2007-09-01
A simple biography of the tennis pro describes her struggle against racism and poverty and her eventual successes at Wimbledon

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Queen of the Track - Heather Lang; Floyd Cooper (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1590788508
Publication Date: 2012-03-01
At the 1948 Olympics in London, members of the U.S. Women's Track and Field team went down to defeat one by one. Any hope of winning rested on Alice Coachman. Thousands of spectators stayed late for the high-jump event and witnessed history as she became the first African American woman to win an Olympic gold medal.

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Serena Williams - Tammy Gagne
ISBN: 9781680201116
Publication Date: 2015-09-01
Describes Serena Williams's life and career accomplishments, including her childhood with sister Venus in Compton, California, and her numerous U.S. Open and Wimbledon victories.

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Just Like Josh Gibson - Angela Johnson; Beth Peck (Illustrator)
ISBN: 0689826281
Publication Date: 2004-01-01
A young girl's grandmother tells her of her love for baseball and the day they let her play in the game even though she was a girl.

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Gabby Douglas: Going for Gold - Tori Kosara
ISBN: 9780545556743
Publication Date: 2013-01-01
Discusses the life of the Olympian, including her family, how she started in gymnastics, and her Olympic success.

 

AFRICAN AMERICAN ARTIST AND POETS

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A Splash of Red - Jennifer Bryant; Melissa Sweet (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780375867125
Publication Date: 2013-01-08
Presents an illustrated introduction to the life and work of artist Horace Pippin, describing his childhood love for drawing and the World War I injury that challenged his career.

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Dave the Potter - Laban Carrick Hill; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780316107310
Publication Date: 2010-09-07
Presents the life of the nineteenth-century artist from South Carolina known as Dave, a Southern slave who became a renowned potter known for signing his pots with poetry

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Jake Makes a World - Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts; Christopher Myers
ISBN: 9780870709654
Publication Date: 2015-06-30
Recounts how the young Jacob Lawrence, as a boy recently arrived in Harlem, reacted to the world around him and translated his responses into art at an after-school arts center.

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In Her Hands - Alan Schroeder; JaeMe Bereal (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781600603327
Publication Date: 2009-10-01
"A biography of African American sculptor Augusta Savage, who overcame many obstacles as a young woman to become a premier female sculptor of the Harlem Renaissance. Includes an afterword about Savage's adult life and works, plus photographs"--Provided by publisher

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Ellington Was Not a Street - Ntozake Shange; Kadir Nelson (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780689828843
Publication Date: 2004-01-01
In this reflective poetic tribute, the author remembers growing up when many of the great figures in African-American history gathered in her family home to talk and share ideas and even sing.

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I, Too, Am America - Langston Hughes; Bryan Collier (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781442420083
Publication Date: 2012-05-22
Presents the popular poem by one of the central figures in the Harlem Renaissance, highlighting the courage and dignity of the African American Pullman porters in the early twentieth century.

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Angel to Angel - Walter Dean Myers
ISBN: 0060277211
Publication Date: 1998-04-01
In the cherished tradition of "Brown Angels" and "Glorious Angels", award-winning author Walter Dean Myers has once again combined his inimitable verse with a painstakingly assembled collection of antique photographs to to create a celebration of the relationship between mother and child.

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My People - Langston Hughes; Charles R. Smith (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781416935407
Publication Date: 2009-01-06
Hughes's spare yet eloquent tribute to his people has been cherished for generations. Now, acclaimed photographer Smith interprets this beloved poem in vivid sepia photographs that capture the glory, the beauty, and the soul of being a black American today

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Meet Danitra Brown - Nikki Grimes; Floyd Cooper (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780688154714
Publication Date: 1997-09-22
A story of two little girls' friendship, told in a series of simple poems

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Freedom over Me - Ashley Bryan (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781481456906
Publication Date: 2016-09-13
"Using original slave auction and plantation estate documents, contrasts the monetary value of a slave with the priceless value of life experiences and dreams that a slave owner could never take away.

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Freedom in Congo Square - Carole Boston Weatherford; R. Gregory Christie (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781499801033
Publication Date: 2016-01-05
A poetic tribute to a lesser-known event in African-American history describes how after working relentlessly for more than six days, slaves in 19th-century New Orleans were permitted to congregate in Congo Square to sing, dance and put aside their troubles for a few hours.

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Radiant Child - Javaka Steptoe
ISBN: 9780316213882
Publication Date: 2016-10-25
Presents the life of the artist, who was inspired as a child by a book of anatomy given to him by his mother after being injured in a car crash and who went on to become a celebrity in the art world before his early death at twenty-eight.

 

More Black History Picture Books

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Alvin Ailey - Andrea Davis Pinkney; Brian Pinkney (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780786810772
Publication Date: 1995-09-05
Alvin Ailey (a choreographer whose work helped popularize modern dance, and whose company still exists today).

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She Loved Baseball - Audrey Vernick (Illustrator); Don Tate (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780061349201
Publication Date: 2010-10-19
Effa Manley (a sports executive and the first woman inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame).

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If a Bus Could Talk - Faith Ringgold (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780689856761
Publication Date: 2003-01-01
Rosa Parks (the civil rights activist who made her famous stand [or sit] when she refused to leave her seat on the bus).

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Bring Me Some Apples and I'll Make You a Pie - Robbin Gourley
ISBN: 9780618158362
Publication Date: 2008-06-18
Edna Lewis (a chef who participated in the “farm to table” movement many years before it became the trend it is today).

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Molly, by Golly! - Dianne Ochiltree; Kathleen Kemly (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781590787212
Publication Date: 2012-09-01
Molly Williams (America’s first female firefighter).

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A Dance Like Starlight - Kristy Dempsey; Floyd Cooper (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780399252846
Publication Date: 2014-01-02
Janet Collins (the first African-American prima ballerina).

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Addy Learns a Lesson - Connie Rose Porter; Dahl Taylor (Illustrator); Roberta Johnson (Editor); Renee Graef (Illustrator); Jane S. Varda (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1562470787
Publication Date: 1993-09-01
After their escape from North Carolina to Philadelphia in the summer of 1864, Addy and her mother begin their new life as free people as her mother gets a paying job and Addy goes to school and learns a lesson in true friendship

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