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VOYABridget "Biddy" Mason began life in 1818 as a slave in Georgia and died in 1891 as one of Los Angeles's wealthiest women. Owned by Robert and Rebecca Smith, a Mormon family, Mason was part of the trek to Utah. She walked the entire journey, caring for her three children, including a newborn baby, and the livestock. The Smith family relocated to California, a free state. When Smith tried to sneak his slaves out to move to Texas, Mason went to court to sue for her freedom. Declared "forever free" by Judge Benjamin Hayes, Mason remained in Los Angeles, becoming a well-respected midwife, landowner, and founder of the city's first AME Church. There is a paucity of information about Mason's early life (only one photograph of her is known to exist), but Williams has fleshed out her book with good information on the period and the Mormon trek west. This series presents a nicely balanced collection of biographies from the American Frontier era including Native Americans, women, African Americans, and white men. Although there is conformity in pagination and types of materials included, each volume has a different author and stands alone as a good read, suitable for both school assignments and pleasure reading. Time lines covering the person and the major events are included, and plentiful sidebars and illustrations, maps, and photographs add depth to the text. Other titles in the series include James Beckwourth: Mountaineer, Scout, and Pioneer; Crazy Horse: Sioux Warrior; Geronimo: Apache Warrior; Sam Houston: Texas Hero; and Sarah Winnemucca: Scout, Activist, and Teacher. (Signature Lives: American Frontier Era). VOYA CODES: 3Q 3P M J S (Readable without serious defects; Will appeal with pushing;Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2006, Compass Point Books, 112p.; Glossary. Index. Illus. Maps. Biblio. Source Notes. Further Reading. Chronology., PLB . Ages 11 to 18.