A FEW OTHER EVENTS FOR
- Happy birthday Ruth Young (Who Says Moo) and Nancy Krulik (How I Survived Middle School series).
- Itâ€™s the birth date of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930), Sherlock Holmes, and Arnold Lobel (1933-1987) Frog and Toad.
- In 1906, the Wright brothers are granted a patent for their â€śFlying-Machine.â€ť Read My Brothersâ€™ Flying Machine: Wilbur, Orville and Me by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Jim Burke, and Airman by Eoin Colfer.
- In 2002, a Birmingham, Alabama, jury convicts a former Ku Klux Klan member of the September 15, 1963 murders of four girls in the bombing of a Baptist Church. Read The Watsons Go to Birminghamâ€”1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis, Birmingham, 1963 by Carole Boston Weatherford, and Birmingham Sunday by Larry Dane Brimner.
In England, May has been designated Local and Community History Month to â€śincrease awareness of local history, promote history in general in the local community, and encourage all members of the community to participate.â€ť This is such a great concept that I want to advocate that we celebrate local history month in America as well. All of us live in communities rich with historyâ€”we just have to champion it.
That message lies at the heart of the book of the day, Candace Flemingâ€™s Imogeneâ€™s Last Stand. Imogene Tripp, the heroine, lives in Liddleville, New Hampshire, a town so small it â€śwasnâ€™t even a speck on the state map.â€ť Imogene loves history, and she constantly quotes from great historical speeches. As a kindergartner, she used show-and-tell to deliver the words of important women from the past. When older, she discovers the Liddleville Historical Society, an old house filled with antiques, â€śunloved and unwanted until Imogene pushed open its creaky front door.â€ť After restoring the society to order, Imogene discovers that the mayor intends to tear the building downâ€”but unfortunately for him, Imogene proves a worthy opponent, one who repeats John Paul Jonesâ€™s line â€śI have not yet begun to fight!â€ť
As Imogene works to have the house declared a national landmark, the book emphasizes that important events in history often occur in the smallest of towns. Although it addresses the serious topic of historical preservation, the book is executed with humor and panache. This picture book combines a delicious textÂ made even funnier by Nancy Carpenterâ€™s energetic pen-and-ink illustrations. She expands the role of Imogeneâ€™s fatherâ€”we see him supporting his daughter, taking her on motorcycle trips, up in an airplane, and finally putting himself in stocks along with herÂ to keep the house from being demolished.
As Imogene says of her own adventureâ€”â€śThat was totally fun!â€ť Celebrate local history by sharing this great read-aloud book withÂ budding historians. After you do, you will probably agree with the words of an eight-year-old boy who loved the bookâ€”â€śWouldnâ€™t it be great if everyone had at least a little Imogene in them?â€ť
Originally posted May 22, 2011. Updated for .