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Sarah Gives Thanks: How Thanksgiving Became a National Holiday Hardcover – August 1, 2012
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From School Library Journal
Gr 1-5-More of a biography about Sarah Josepha Hale than a holiday book, this well-researched, engaging read-aloud offers youngsters a glimpse into the lives of women and families in 19th-century America as well as to the history of how Thanksgiving became a national holiday. More commonly known as the author of "Mary Had a Little Lamb," Hale was actually a feminist before her time, despite her lack of formal education. When she became widowed with five young children, she wrote to support her family. Her book of poems and first novel led to a position as an editor at Ladies' Magazine. Unlike other magazines of the period, this publication ran articles on history, science, and schools for women. Hale went on to take a job as an "editress" at Lady's Book, making it "the most widely read magazine in the country." As her name and opinions gained popularity, she became an untiring advocate for making Thanksgiving a national holiday. She wrote editorials and petitioned four different presidents over the course of 36 years, until Abraham Lincoln finally proclaimed the last Thursday of November a holiday in 1863. Generous, full-spread watercolor illustrations add humor and colorful details about costume, home, publishing, and political life during this period. Libraries that own Laurie Halse Anderson's Thank You, Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving (S & S, 2002) will still want this fresh, accessible offering.-Barbara Auerbach, PS 217, Brooklyn, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Sarah Josepha Hale was already a published writer when her husband died, in 1822. To support her five young children, she became a novelist and, eventually, the editor of “the most widely read magazine in America,” Godey’s Lady’s Book. Over time, Hale took up various causes, but, beginning in 1826, she worked to make Thanksgiving “a national festival and observed by all our people.” Each year, she promoted the holiday in her magazine, encouraged leaders to get behind it, and sent a request to the president. Finally, in 1863, Lincoln made Thanksgiving a national holiday. The informative text is clearly written, and the watercolor artwork is fluid and engaging. Indicating the passage of time in a picture book is challenging, but Gardner manages by showing Sarah aging, her children growing up, and a succession of U.S. presidents receiving her written requests. An author’s note and source bibliography round out this rewarding picture book on Hale and her role in the history of Thanksgiving. Grades 1-3. --Carolyn Phelan
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Top Customer Reviews
Sarah Josepha Hall was widowed young with five children and had to find a way to support them. She turned to writing and became a well known writer and editor. It took Sarah 36 years until she found a president, Abraham Lincoln, who issued the proclamation declaring a national day of thanksgiving.
Sarah was also instrumental in supporting and furthering the education of women in the 1800's. What courage and strength for a women to do that so long ago.
I feel our young women today need to learn about these brave women who were instrumental not only in focusing on the rights of women, but in the institutions of education, family, and tradition.
This excellent picture book tells us more about Sarah Hale, showing how this remarkable woman badgered her brother into passing on his college education to her during his breaks. She continued her independent education in the company of her beloved husband, who encouraged her to publish her writing. Then when he died, she gave thanks to God for having known him - and courageously worked to support her family. Being left alone with five children in a time when women didn't work outside the home was a desperate crisis. But through hard work and persistence she became a successful "editress," as she insisted on being called, and then went on to establish a tradition that has shaped our culture for 150 years.
This story stands out among juvenile biographies for its interest and accessibility. Appealingly and skillfully illustrated, it's visually appealing, and the pictures carry a large part of the story. The writing is smooth and evocative, and really highlights the humanity of the person in focus. It's an excellent read.
SARAH GIVES THANKS:HOW THANKSGIVING BECAME A NATIONAL HOLIDAY by Mike Allegra,illustrated by David C. Gardner is an exciting Children's books/Holidays/America Thanksgiving. This story of Sarah Josepha Hale, a young widow with small children. A young woman who would not stop until she made Thanksgiving a National holiday. An inspiring story! She remarried in 1813 to David Hale, a lawyer, who encouraged her, she published a few pieces of poetry with her husbands encouragement. A widow once again, Sarah earned her living by writing. She was also the editress of a Ladies magazine. On Oct 3, 1863, Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving a National holiday on the last Thursday of November. Sarah did many things for women's rights and was a remarkable woman. A must read!
Did you know?.....Who helped make some of the National Landmarks noted? Who wrote the novel to condemn slavery? and Who wrote "Mary Had a Little Lamb"? To learn more on this remarkable lady you must read "Sarah Gives Thanks: How Thanksgiving Became a National Holiday" you will not regret reading the life of Sarah Josepha Hale. Educators,young readers and older students will enjoy this wonderful story with beautiful illustrations. Received for an honest review from the publisher.
HEAT RATING: NONE(CHILDREN'S BOOKS)
REVIEWED BY: AprilR, My Book Addiction Reviews
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a lovely Thanksgiving picture book.Read more