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Black History Month: Books for Your 1st and 2nd Graders

Celebrate the history and culture of African Americans with these early elementary reads.
 
Cover image for The Other Side
The Other Side
by Jacqueline Woodson Illustrated by E. B. Lewis
Clover has always wondered why a fence separates the black side of town from the white side. But this summer when Annie, a white girl from the other side, begins to sit on the fence, Clover grows more curious about the reason why the fence is there and about the daring girl who sits on it, rain or shine.
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Cover image for Minty: A Story of Young Harriet Tubman
Minty: A Story of Young Harriet Tubman
by Alan Schroeder Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney

Many people know about Harriet Tubman's adult life — how she helped hundreds of slaves escape to freedom along the Underground Railroad. But how many know about Harriet Tubman's life as a child on the Brodas plantation in the late 1820s?

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Cover image for Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Martin's Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
by Doreen Rappaport Illustrated by Bryan Collier

Martin Luther King, Jr., grew up in a place where people used words that made him feel bad. This beautifully illustrated, award-winning book shows how Martin used words to fight for equal rights for black people.

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Hardcover Picturebooks : $12.79

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Cover image for Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad
Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad
by Ellen Levine Illustrated by Kadir Nelson
A stirring, dramatic story of a slave who mails himself to freedom by a Jane Addams Peace Award-winning author and a Coretta Scott King Award-winning artist.

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Hardcovers : $13.59

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Cover image for Harlem
Harlem
by Walter Dean Myers Illustrated by Christopher Myers

Father and son celebrate a rich and vibrant neighborhood that has been a historic center of African-American culture in New York City. Walter Dean Myers gives poetry a jazz backbeat to tell Harlem's story.

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Cover image for Follow the Drinking Gourd: A Story of the Underground Railroad
Follow the Drinking Gourd: A Story of the Underground Railroad
by Jeanette Winter Illustrated by Jeanette Winter

The title of this inspiring story is the title of an important folk song from a troubled part of our nation's history. Hidden in the lyrics of "Follow the Drinking Gourd" were directions for following the Underground Railroad, the covert trail by which black slaves could escape North to eventual freedom.

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Cover image for Escape North!: The Story of Harriet Tubman
Escape North!: The Story of Harriet Tubman
by Monica Kulling Illustrated by Teresa Flavin

An easy-to-read, page-turning account of Harriet Tubman's life, from her childhood in slavery to her years as a conductor on the Underground Railroad to her later work as a suffragette and as a spy in the Civil War. This remarkable true story brings to life one of America's greatest female role models.

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Cover image for Dinner at Aunt Connie's House
Dinner at Aunt Connie's House
by Faith Ringgold Illustrated by Faith Ringgold

As she did in Aunt Harriet's Underground Railroad in the Sky, internationally renowned artist Faith Ringgold uses the framework of a traditional children's picture book to teach young readers about important women in African-American history.

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Cover image for Dad, Jackie, and Me
Dad, Jackie, and Me
by Myron Uhlberg Illustrated by Colin Bootman

An inspiring and sentimental tale of one famous summer in Brooklyn in 1947.

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Cover image for Addy Learns a Lesson: A School Story
Addy Learns a Lesson: A School Story
Series: American Girl
by Connie Rose Porter Illustrated by Melodye Benson Rosales

After escaping from a plantation in North Carolina, Addy and her mother arrive in Philadelphia. At school for the first time, she learns about reading and writing — and gets a lesson in true friendship.

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