Children's Literature - Magi EvansA brief history of the Civil War introduces this book about the freeing of slaves in the 1860s. The author touches on the economies of both the North and South, why slaves were needed, which states used slaves and which states supported the North and the South in the war. A description of the system of slavery and how it worked is included. Students will be more able to understand Lincoln’s thoughts and decision-making processes about freeing the slaves, especially his original hesitancy about ending slavery and his subsequent turnaround leading to the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation. Aloian ends the book with information about the Civil Rights Act of the 1960s, neatly tying together the two most important movements in freeing an entire race of people. Photographs and illustrations, many of them two-page spreads, bring this part of American history to life. Readers can see an original newspaper ad for the sale of slaves, as well as a post card commemorating Lincoln’s proclamation. Colorful text boxes help to maintain a young reader’s interest, and words in bold print point not only to the glossary, but also to the bottom of each page for a quick definition, an unusual but effective feature. The usual table of contents, index, and list of recommended books and websites are included. A part of the “Crabtree Chrome” series, this book is recommended for school and classroom libraries. Reviewer: Magi Evans; Ages 9 to 12.
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