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Coast to Coast with Alice
     

Coast to Coast with Alice

by Patricia Rusch Hyatt
 
Alice Ramsey, determined to be the first woman to drive across the United States, ventured out with her sixteen-year-old friend, Minna Jahns, and two other traveling companions for the journey of a lifetime.

The year was 1909. Automobiles were brand new. There were few road maps and in some places no roads at all. But in New York City, Alice was climbing into a

Overview

Alice Ramsey, determined to be the first woman to drive across the United States, ventured out with her sixteen-year-old friend, Minna Jahns, and two other traveling companions for the journey of a lifetime.

The year was 1909. Automobiles were brand new. There were few road maps and in some places no roads at all. But in New York City, Alice was climbing into a bright green Maxwell touring car, destined to be the first woman to drive across America. Author Patricia Rusch Hyatt has recreated the events of that historical summer in the form of a journal that Minna might have kept. Minna's thoughts are imagined but her adventures, from a murder investigation in Nebraska to an itchy encounter with bedbugs in Wyoming, really happened. The book is illustrated throughout with photographs from the actual journey.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Uma Krishnaswami
It's 1909, and the motor car is a new phenomenon. The reader of this book is privileged to join sixteen-year-old Minna Jahns as she rides across the United States with Alice Ramsey, the first woman driver and only the third person to ever make the trip. Hyatt has turned painstaking research based on newspaper reports, interviews and the memoirs of Alice herself, into a fast-moving account of both an exciting journey and a fascinating time. From reporters in New York City to coyotes in Wyoming to a chocolate cake and lamb chop breakfast in Nevada, Minna's journal is filled with details that make both journey and time come alive. A map shows the route Alice and Minna (and their chaperones) took, and the author provides an afterword and 'car facts' that will also be of interest to the reader. This is a lively tribute to a woman and the spirit of her times.
School Library Journal
Gr 3-6-On June 9, 1909, Alice Ramsey powered up her Maxwell touring car and set off to drive herself and three other women from New York to California. She was the first woman to attempt the arduous cross-country journey, although two men had completed it in a little over two months. Coast to Coast with Alice is a fictional version of actual events, based on newspaper articles, interviews, and Ramsey's own memoirs. Hyatt's tale of the coast-to-coast trip unfolds in journal entries written by Minna Jahns, a spirited, adventurous 16-year-old who is one of the passengers. (Jahns did accompany Alice Ramsey on her historic drive in 1909, as author's notes and old photographs illustrate.) The travelers encounter Nebraska mud, treacherous bridges, and miles of unmapped roads-or, rather, dirt ruts that pass for roads. Fifty-nine days, eleven tire changes and three axles later, Alice's green Maxwell pulls into San Francisco, where the people hail her as the ``Woman Motorist of the Century.'' This is an interesting piece of automotive history, illustrated with charming and relevant photographs of the actual trip and cartoonlike illustrations that appear superfluous and overly quaint. Despite minor shortcomings in illustration and occasional lapses in the credibility of Minna's tone, Coast to Coast with Alice is a witty tale of adventure and a lighthearted exploration of women's changing roles.-Jennifer Fleming, Boston Public Library

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781575050744
Publisher:
Lerner Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/01/1997
Series:
Middle Grade Fiction Series
Pages:
72
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 9.16(h) x 0.22(d)
Lexile:
1030L (what's this?)
Age Range:
7 - 10 Years

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