Title: Climbing Lincoln's Steps: The African American Journey
Author: Suzanne Slade
Illustrator: Colin Bootman
Publisher: Albert Whitman & Company
Concepts: racial equality, social justice, discrimination, slavery, human resources
Review: Since its completion and dedication in 1922, the enormous marble sculpture of Abraham Lincoln in the Lincoln Memorial building has drawn millions of visitors and served as the site of several major historical events. In particular, in 1939, African American opera singer Marian Anderson gave a mesmerizing performance on the Lincoln Memorial steps to an enormous live and radio audience after she was denied the right to sign in Constitution Hall. Almost 25 years later, civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” on the monument’s steps. Several decades after that rally, the nation’s first African American president and his family paid a symbolic visit to the Lincoln Memorial.
Climbing Lincoln’s Steps uses these events as the backdrop in chronicling the long progression in U.S. history, from slavery until the election of President Barack Obama, toward racial equality and social justice. The book makes a useful resource for parents and educators seeking a book that will give younger children an overview of the history of racial discrimination and the civil rights movement in the United States.
Review by: Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children