Pennies for Elephants

Pennies for Elephants

by Lita Judge
     
 
Extra, Extra! Three Trained Pachyderms for Sale! When Dorothy and her brother Henry learn that three beloved local circus elephants will soon be retiring, they are shocked and dismayed-but also inspired! The owner has agreed to sell the elephants to the children of Boston if they can raise the $6,000. They have two months. They'll have to contribute

Overview

Extra, Extra! Three Trained Pachyderms for Sale! When Dorothy and her brother Henry learn that three beloved local circus elephants will soon be retiring, they are shocked and dismayed-but also inspired! The owner has agreed to sell the elephants to the children of Boston if they can raise the $6,000. They have two months. They'll have to contribute every penny they have, but they're determined to do it. Soon, more and more children are joining in, donating eveything they have to the cause. Fourteen cents from Roger from washing windows. Five cents from Jimmy from the tooth fairy. Even the local cinema makes a contribution-after the children decide to stop spending their money on movies. Eventually, kids from up and down the whole east coast are chipping in! In the end, it's the elephants themselves-Mollie, Waddy, and Tony-who are most grateful for the children's resolute and generous spirit. Following the immense critical success of One Thousand Tracings, Lita Judge has written and illustrated an inspiring and heartwarming picture book, based on a true story of compassion and believing.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As she did in One Thousand Tracings, Judge weaves a compelling tale based on a true, heartwarming incident. In 1914, the children of Boston raised $6,000 to buy three trained elephants for the Franklin Park Zoo. But told through the eyes of siblings (and fund-raisers) Dorothy and Henry, the story expands into an inspired celebration of kid power. From the opening spread, children are at the helm. “Pennies for elephants! Send in your pennies, your nickels, and dimes!” hawks the newspaper boy, capturing the children’s attention, but not the humorously haughty adult passersby. Dorothy and Henry, along with 50,000 other children, donate their savings, shovel snow and throw admission-based costume parties: “When Henry got an idea in his head, it was like fuel to a Studebaker.” Such dollops of historical flavor abound, with watercolors of knickers-clad boys and streets bustling with people, horses and horseless carriages. Warm sepia tones lend atmosphere, too, and splashes of bright red, blue, purple and yellow in the children’s outfits echo their sunny, can-do demeanor: “We kids had done it!... Mollie, Waddy, and Tony were home to stay.” Ages 4–7. (June)
Children's Literature - Carolyn Mott Ford
"Three Trained Pachyderms for Sale!" So reads the headline in The Boston Post on a cold, wintry day in 1914 and this book is based upon that story. The owners are giving the kids of Boston two months to collect $6,000 in order to buy the elephants for the city zoo. A little girl named Dorothy points out the story to her brother, Henry, and he spins right into action. For as Dorothy knows, "When Henry got an idea in his head, it was like fuel to a Studebaker." Dorothy and Henry contribute their combined life savings of one dollar and fourteen cents. Then they set to work, as do many of the children in the Boston area. They shovel snow, put on a party, and wash neighborhood pets. The amounts earned from these endeavors appear as newspapers stories. There is even a story about how the little elephant, Tony, finds a dime which he tosses on the table at a tea party. The children's efforts are rewarded and the elephants— Mollie, Waddy, and Tony—are soon in the zoo where the sign reads, "Gift from the Children of New England!" The wonderful watercolors accompanying the text capture the spirit of the story perfectly and add to the sense of time and place. Reviewer: Carolyn Mott Ford
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3—Where there's a will, there's a way, as is well evidenced in this story based on actual events in 1914, detailing how children raised more than $6000 to purchase the first elephants for a local zoo. The tale unfolds in a first-person narrative by young Dorothy, who, with her brother Henry, reads in the newspaper that the retiring owners of three trained elephants are giving the children of Boston two months to collect the necessary funds. (The city can't afford them.) The siblings hold a costume party, charging admission and raising 87 cents; meanwhile, other children of all ethnic and social backgrounds across the city and throughout New England unite to shovel snow, run errands, hold bake sales and magic shows, and give of their allowances for this worthy cause. A designated "elephant editor" at the Boston Post recounts the fund-raising progress penny by penny; the campaign succeeds and culminates in a joyful parade ending at Fenway Park. Simulated excerpts from old sepia-toned newspaper clips appear throughout the narrative and are superimposed on and the full-color spreads rendered in energetic watercolor and line. This uplifting tale will surely captivate—and hopefully inspire—contemporary children.—Kathleen Finn, St. Francis Xavier School, Winooski, VT

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781423113904
Publisher:
Hyperion Books for Children
Publication date:
06/09/2009
Pages:
40
Product dimensions:
8.80(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.20(d)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

Meet the Author


Lita Judge is the illustrator of several books for children, including Mogo, the Third Warthog, S is for Simon, and D is for Dinosaurs, and the authorillustrator of One Thousand Tracings. She lives in Peterborough, New Hampshire, with her husband and two cats.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >