African American Phase III

Norton’s PHASE III: Autobiographies, Biographies, and Historical Nonfiction

Studying the autobiographies, biographies, and historical nonfiction in Phase III helps in identifying historical happenings that influenced the culture.

    Adler, D.A. (1989). A picture book of Martin Luther King, Jr. New York: Holiday House.
A brief, illustrated, biography of the Baptist minister and civil rights leader whose philosophy and practice of nonviolent civil disobedience helped American blacks win many battles for equal rights. Gr. K-2

    Adler, D. A. (1993). A picture book of Rosa Parks. New York: Holiday House.
A picture book biography of the Alabama black woman whose refusal to give up her seat on a bus helped establish the civil rights movement. Gr. 2-4

    Adler, D. A. (1989).Jackie Robinson: he was the first . New York: Holiday House.
Traces the life of the talented and determined athlete who broke the color barrier in major league baseball in 1947 by joining the Brooklyn Dodgers. GR: 1-4.

    Bial, R. (1995). The underground railroad. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.
During the years before the Civil War thousands of enslaved people slipped through the night, riding the Underground Railroad. Gr. 3-7

    Chocolate, D.M. (1996). Kente colors. New York: Walker and Company
A rhyming description of the kente cloth costumes of the Ashanti and Ewe people of Ghana and a portrayal of the symbolic colors and patterns. Gr. Pre-3

    Chocolate, D. M. (1992). My first Kwanzaa book. New York: Scholastic.
Introduces Kwanzaa, the holiday in which Afro-Americans celebrate their cultural heritage. Gr. Pre-2

    Engel, D. (1995). Ezra Jack Keats: A biography with illustrations. New York: Silver Moon Press.
Examines the life of Ezra Jack Keats, who created more than twenty critically acclaimed books for young readers. Gr. 3-7

    Freedman, F. B.(1971). Two tickets to freedom; the true story of Ellen and William Craft,fugitive slaves. New York: Simon and Schuster
Traces the search for freedom by a black man and wife who traveled to Boston and eventually to England after their escape from slavery in Georgia. Gr. 7-9

    Goss, L. (1995). It's Kwanzaa time! New York: G.P. Putnam.
Stories, recipes, and activities introduce the holiday of Kwanzaa and the ways in which it is celebrated. Gr. K-6

    Greenfield, E. (1997). For the love of the game: Michael Jordan and me. New York: HarperCollins.
Two children discover the importance of the human spirit and recognize their similarity to basketball star Michael Jordan. Gr. 3-6

    Haber, L. (1970). Black pioneers of science and invention. New York: Harcourt, Brace & World.
Traces the lives of black scientists and inventors who have made significant contributions in the various fields of science and industry. Gr. 7-9

    Hamilton, V. (1988). Anthony Burns: The defeat and triumph of a fugitive slave. New York: A.A. Knopf.
A biography of the slave who escaped to Boston in 1854, was arrested at the instigation of his owner, and whose trial caused a furor between abolitionists and those determined to enforce the Fugitive Slave Acts. Gr. 5-up

    Hamilton, V. (1993). Many thousand gone: African Americans from slavery to freedom. New York: Knopf.
Recounts the journey of Black slaves to freedom via the underground railroad, an extended group of people who helped fugitive slaves in many ways. Gr. 5-9

    Haskins, J. (1992). The day Martin Luther King, Jr., was shot: A photo history of the civil rights movement. New York: Scholastic.
Presents the history of the civil rights movement through pictures, newspaper clippings, and text, from colonial times to 1991, framed within the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. Gr. 3-6

    Haskins, J. (1992). One more river to cross: The stories of twelve Black Americans. New York: Scholastic Inc.
Presents brief biographies of twelve African Americans who courageously fought against racism to become leaders in their fields, including Marian Anderson, Ralph Bunche, Fannie Lou Hamer, and Malcolm X. Gr. 3-7

    Lester, J. (1968). To be a slave. New York: Dial Press.
A compilation, selected from various sources and arranged chronologically, of the reminiscences of slaves and ex-slaves about their experiences from the leaving of Africa through the Civil War and into the early twentieth century. Gr. 7-12

    Levenson, D. (1977). The first book of the Civil War. New York: Franklin Watts.
Discusses the history of the Civil War, the life of a soldier, slavery, taxes, and positions of women at the time. Gr. 4-7

    McKissack, P. (1994). Black diamond: the story of the Negro baseball leagues. New York : Scholastic.
Traces the history of baseball in the Negro Leagues and its great heroes, including Monte Irwin, Buck Leonard, and Cool Papa Bell. Gr. 6-10

    McKissack, P. (1987). The Civil Rights Movement in America from 1865 to the present. Chicago: Childrens Press.
From the beginning of Reconstruction to the present, traces the struggle of blacks to gain their civil rights in America, with a brief comparison of their problems to those of other minorities. Gr. 5-9

    Meltzer, M., (Ed.). (1984). The Black Americans: a history in their own words, 1619-1983. New York: T.Y. Crowell.
A history of Black people in the United States, as told through letters, speeches, articles, eyewitness accounts, and other documents. Gr. 7-12

    Mitchell, B. (1986). Shoes for everyone: a story about Jan Matzeliger. Minneapolis: Carolrhoda Books.
A biography of the half-Dutch/half-black Surinamese man who, despite the hardships and prejudice he found in his new Massachusetts home, invented a shoe-lasting machine that revolutionized the shoe industry in the late nineteenth century. Gr. 3-6

    Myers, W.D. (1993). Malcolm X: By any means necessary. New York: Scholastic.
A forthright and courageous account of a complex man whose life reflected the major issues of our times. Gr. 5-up