Buy New
$12.43
Qty:1
  • List Price: $17.99
  • Save: $5.56 (31%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad Hardcover – January 1, 2007


See all 9 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Hardcover
"Please retry"
$12.43
$8.61 $5.80
Audio CD
"Please retry"

100%20Children%27s%20Books%20to%20Read%20in%20a%20Lifetime


Frequently Bought Together

Henry's Freedom Box: A True Story from the Underground Railroad + Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt (Reading Rainbow Books)
Price for both: $18.72

Buy the selected items together

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Top 20 Books for Kids
See the books our editors' chose as the Best Children's Books of 2014 So Far or see the lists by age: Baby-2 | Ages 3-5 | Ages 6-8 | Ages 9-12 | Nonfiction

Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 380L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press (January 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780439777339
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439777339
  • ASIN: 043977733X
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 9 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (57 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Levine (Freedom's Children) recounts the true story of Henry Brown, a slave who mailed himself to freedom. Thanks to Nelson's (Ellington Was Not a Street) penetrating portraits, readers will feel as if they can experience Henry's thoughts and feelings as he matures through unthinkable adversity. As a boy, separated from his mother, he goes to work in his new master's tobacco factory and eventually meets and marries another slave, with whom he has three children. In a heartwrenching scene depicted in a dramatically shaded pencil, watercolor and oil illustration, Henry watches as his family—suddenly sold in the slave market—disappears down the road. Henry then enlists the help of an abolitionist doctor and mails himself in a wooden crate "to a place where there are no slaves!" He travels by horse-drawn cart, steamboat and train before his box is delivered to the Philadelphia address of the doctor's friends on March 30, 1849. Alongside Henry's anguished thoughts en route, Nelson's clever cutaway images reveal the man in his cramped quarters (at times upside-down). A concluding note provides answers to questions that readers may wish had been integrated into the story line, such as where did Henry begin his journey? (Richmond, Va.); how long did it take? (27 hours). Readers never learn about Henry's life as a free man—or, perhaps unavoidably, whether he was ever reunited with his family. Still, these powerful illustrations will make readers feel as if they have gained insight into a resourceful man and his extraordinary story. Ages 4-8. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal

Grade 2–5—Inspired by an actual 1830s lithograph, this beautifully crafted picture book briefly relates the story of Henry "Box" Brown's daring escape from slavery. Torn from his mother as a child, and then forcibly separated from his wife and children as an adult, a heartsick and desperate Brown conspired with abolitionists and successfully traveled north to Philadelphia in a packing crate. His journey took just over one full day, during which he was often sideways or upside down in a wooden crate large enough to hold him, but small enough not to betray its contents. The story ends with a reimagining of the lithograph that inspired it, in which Henry Brown emerges from his unhappy confinement—in every sense of the word—and smiles upon his arrival in a comfortable Pennsylvania parlor. Particularly considering the broad scope of Levine's otherwise well-written story, some of the ancillary "facts" related in her text are unnecessarily dubious; reports vary, for instance, as to whether the man who sealed Henry into the crate was a doctor or a cobbler. And, while the text places Henry's arrival on March 30, other sources claim March 24 or 25. Nelson's illustrations, always powerful and nuanced, depict the evolution of a self-possessed child into a determined and fearless young man. While some of the specifics are unfortunately questionable, this book solidly conveys the generalities of Henry Brown's story.—Catherine Threadgill, Charleston County Public Library, SC
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

Ellen Levine has always been drawn to stories of people who struggled for justice, and of ordinary people who did extraordinary things. She was fascinated by Henry "Box" Brown, whose escape is recounted in The Underground Railroad by William Still, first published in 1872. Ms. Levine was awed by Henry's ingenious idea and moved by his incredible courage. Among the author's award-winning books are Freedom's Children, winner of the Jane Addams Peace Award and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults; and Darkness Over Denmark, a Jame Addams Peace Award Honor Book and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults. She lives in New York City and Salem, New York.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
46
4 star
9
3 star
1
2 star
0
1 star
1
See all 57 customer reviews
The illustrations are beautiful & the story is memorable.
Kellie
Although this book is a very easy read I would not recommend reading it to children under the 4th grade.
Amber's Book Reviews
In Henry Freedom's Box this unbelievable but daring true story is brought to life.
Vickie Beene Beavers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Vickie Beene Beavers on February 8, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Had the story not been documented, one would believe that the story of a fugitive slave shipping himself to freedom by freight mail was merely a urban legend. In Henry Freedom's Box this unbelievable but daring true story is brought to life. The story authored by Ellen Levine succesfully traces Brown's early life to his ultimate escape to freedom at the age thirty-three. Award-winning illustrator Kadir Nelson creates such realistic intimacy with his muted but intense illustrations of former Virginia slave Henry "Box" Brown. In just two pages, the artist convincingly conveys the painful and risktaking trip of Mr. Henry "Box" Brown. This scene, this story will touch any person who can empathize with any harrowing escape.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Kemie Nix on June 1, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Born a slave, Henry and his siblings worked in the "big house" for his master -- who, on his deathbed, gave Henry to his son. During the years he worked for the son in his tobacco warehouse, Henry grew to manhood

and married a girl who was enslaved by a neighbor. They had children. His wife accurately discerned that her master had debts that might cause him to sell his slaves. This was done one day while Henry was working.

At lunchtime, he caught a departing glimpse of his family members, and then he never saw them again.

After weeks of despair, Henry had an idea while he was moving a crate. He would mail himself to freedom.This true story is told in understated prose which only enhances its power. With realistic paintings in a dark

palette appropriate for Henry's sad experiences, there are no smiles in this book except on the page depicting Henry's family together. His wife has a gentle half-smile. On the last page when Henry is climbing

out of his box in Philadelphia, both the mailed and the recipients are smiling.
1 Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Miss on May 15, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Synopsis: This picture book shows the character as a young boy on the cover, but this story is really about Henry Brown as a n adult and the incredible decision he made to reach freedom through an ingenious plan. That "Box" as a middle name was adopted by Brown in commemoration of the method by which he gained his freedom. He had himself crated up and shipped from slavery to liberty. His risky plan worked, and this is his story.

Evaluation: Many children in the primary grades may have heard the stories of slave escape through the Underground Railroad but this well written book brings to life the time of slavery and the voice of Henry "Box" Brown. As a child Henry dreams of freedom and the author appeals to the heart and minds of all readers K-3 as the metaphors are simple but effective. The reader is able to get engrossed in the language and pictures for they are truly representative of the time of slavery. The well chosen words the author uses are beneficial for helping a young child see just how devastating slavery was to the slave and their families. When Brown's family was sold, he was determined to escape to the North. His determination and pain leaps off the page and right into our hearts. We are holding our breath as the author describes the decision and the process of which Henry will escape. The story of that escape provides an inspiring view to the younger reader. Along with well-written narrative and metaphors, the awesome and moving illustrations provided by Kadir Nelson create a journey not only for Henry but for the reader. We are able to grow with young Henry to adulthood. This adds to the story so that the reader feels a part of the time and life of Henry. The illustrations tell a story of their own.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By BeYOUtiful on May 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Not only is the story itself uplifting and inspiring, but it is truly one of the most beautifully illustrated books I have ever seen. I was nearly moved to tears just reading the book for the first time. The stories of courageous men and women from an era not too long-gone is told and illustrated with poignancy, dignity, and respect. A book like this should be on the shelf of any child studying issues of slavery and freedom in the context of American history, as well as the shelf of any adult who could stand to be reminded of just how far we've come and how far we must still go.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Deb Nam-Krane VINE VOICE on January 13, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This story documents the slavery and eventual freedom of one man. Henry and his brothers and sisters work for a good master. However, on his deathbed, the master gives Henry to his son, separating Henry from the rest of his family forever. Henry works well in the master's son's tobacco factory, presumably avoiding the beatings of the foreman. Later, he meets Nancy, a slave of another master. The two are allowed to marry and live together, and eventually they have three children. Unfortunately, Nancy's master suffers a financial loss, and Henry is informed one day that his wife and children have been sold.

The loss of this family is forever too, and Henry is now spurred to seek his freedom so he'll never have to suffer a loss like that again. With the help of two friends- one another slave, one a white doctor who doesn't believe in slavery- he literally mails himself to freedom in Philadelphia.

What I liked most about this book was that the author does not force an emotional response out of the reader because she doesn't have to. Young readers- as well as adults- can immediately appreciate the horror of being separated from your family as a child and then losing your children. The author presents the losses, but doesn't dictate the grief and anger that the main character must have felt. This makes the reader's response that much more powerful.

Although Henry does eventually gain his freedom, his previous losses haunt the end of the story, just as they must have haunted him and countless other American slaves.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Customer Images

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Search

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?