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The Long March: The Choctaw's Gift to Irish Famine Relief Paperback – October 26, 2001

5.0 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In a starred review, PW called this story of the Choctaw Indians, who raised money to aid the Irish during the great potato famine, "a deeply moving work." Ages 7-up.

Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-5AIn the 1830s, the United States government forced the people of the Choctaw Nation to leave their homeland in the area of Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana, and to walk 500 miles to Indian territory, which later became Oklahoma. These people suffered from starvation, cold, and lack of promised provisions. Many died along the way. Yet, in 1847, when a call went out to help people starving during Ireland's Potato Famine, the Choctaw responded, and sent all they could collect from their meager earnings. This sophisticated picture book describes a Choctaw family who must decide if they want to help faraway Europeans, and who, in the process, try to come to terms with the humiliation and suffering they felt about the Long March. Fitzpatrick collaborated with Choctaw representatives to relate this moving true story with universal appeal. Her striking black-and-white drawings capture the events and show great respect and dignity for all of the characters and their concerns. The words and illustrations work together extremely well, presenting the story in a clear and compelling manner.ADarcy Schild, Schwegler Elementary School, Lawrence, KS
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Tricycle Press (October 26, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582460655
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582460659
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 0.1 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,628,283 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
(I got this book in Dublin, Ireland, recently.)
This is a truly delightful book. The drawings are lovingly created and the story is both touching and well written. What makes it even more compelling is that it is based on a wonderful true act of human generosity over 150 years ago, from one impoverished people to another, who, although worlds apart in both distance and cultures, had a common enemy, in hunger and oppression.
The author travelled to Oklahoma to research the book and has gone to great lengths to ensure the drawings are authentic as well as inspiring. I particularly like the drawings of the great-grandmother and indeed,the clever shadow of the American eagle when Choona raises his arms in the final drawing as well as the subtle, celtic symbols to be found in this same drawing. "The Long March" is a must for the millions of us with Irish-American heritage - every Irish American child should read this book!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is worth getting for the artwork alone. The story itself is about a forgotten piece of AmerIndian - Celtic history that is worth remembering: How the impoverished Choctaw tribe turned the tragedy of The Long March into a blessing for a people an ocean away.
This story is true but the parable quality makes it especially worth reading: How this Indian people, the Choctaw Nation, decided to help a specific group of the white race that had afflicted them. In a time of Ireland's great distress, the Choctaw, forgave and reached out to these starving people in simple understanding of the hardships the Potato Famine was creating.
The book is written by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick who is from and who is Irish and lives in Ireland. She reseached the events of this humanitarian gift in conjunction with the Choctaw tribe.
The magnificent art work was done by a Native American man, Gary WhiteDeer who lives in Ada, Oklahoma. He has a tremendous talent and ability. He depicts the despair and horror of The Great March that uprooted so many Southern Tribes. He show the whole tragic incident of great cruelty the grueling trek to Oklahoma during the Presidency of Andrew Jackson. Yet WhiteDeer fills these same pictures with sympathy, understanding and shows the great strength, courage and determination of these people to survive.
I am Irish steeped in Irish history, legend and myth, yet I had never heard the story before. I know several of the Choctaw Nation with whom I shared the book, and they, too, had never heard the story. This is one piece of American - Irish history that SHOULD BE remembered and this book does it with clarity, charity and style.
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Format: Hardcover
In 1847 an impoverished displaced group of Choctaw Indians collected from their meager resources the sum of $170 to send toward food relief for the Irish Potato Famine.
Through the memories of Choona, now known as Tom, who is very, very old, we learn of how he, as a young man, at last learned of that part of his family's history about which no one would speak & yet everyone looked so wounded. The Long March, when his people were forced to walk from Florida to Mississippi all through one fearsome, killing winter.
The Long March is rich in American history & memory. The marvelous drawings create a magically real place. This is a must for anyone who loves looking at other ways to live in community; other ways of teaching the spirit to grow & learning about courage, wisdom & respecting the memories.
An amazing book - to be read & read again & again & the pictures to be studied & dreamed over. Beautifully evocative.
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Format: Paperback
This book seems to be a wonderful portrayal of a Native American family and community and their culture and history. One point that I appreciate is that the author tried to stay true to the Choctaw cultural activities, arts and lifestyle in the beautiful drawings and text. The author did not meld several different tribal cultures together as a homogenous "Native American culture." The message of the book also helps young readers to respect the sacrifices and values of the tribe, as well as to question the way Euro-Americans treated them in the past. A treasured book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick has done a beautiful job retelling what happened to the Choctaw people during the Trail of Tears march. More than that, she has shown what kindness they showed to the Irish as they suffered through the famine and shared what little they had. A beautiful tribute to the kindness of the Choctaw people!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A story seldom told and very meaningful to anyone with Choctaw heritage. A nice story of good world-citizenship and generosity. Written for children but this 62 year old really enjoyed it and bought copies for each of my Choctaw connected fsmiky members and friends.
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Format: Hardcover
The illustrations are absolutely stunning. This book was recommended to me, and I paid the going price for a used copy because I wanted it so much. I have to say I was a good investment, but I'm going to protect this treasure now, since apparently it is impossible to buy new anymore. This is more a story of the Trail of Tears (the Long March) than it is of the Choctaw helping in the Irish Potato Famine, but the two pieces of history intertwine nicely in this coming-of-age tale.
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