This book offers a frank and fascinating look at the life of Carter G. Woodson, the father of Black History who created the first organization and the first journal and the first week devoted to African-American history. Carter G. Woodson was born in New Canton, Virginia, about thirty miles southeast of Charlottesville. At the age of 17 he moved to Huntington, West Virginia, and worked in the coal mines before enrolling in Douglas High School. After teaching for a few years, he enrolled at Berea College in Kentucky. This biography points out that we dropped out of Berea for lack of funds before returning to earn his degree. After teaching in the Phillipines, he enrolled at the University of Chicago and obtained a masters degree there. While teaching in Washington, D.C., he intermittently worked on his doctorate at Harvard and eventually became the first son of slaves, and only the second Black man - after W. E. B. DuBois - to earn a doctorate there. He was hired at Howard University, and this book tells of his conflict with the white President of Howard. After being fired from Howard, Woodson managed to obtain some meager funding and worked on The Journal of Negro History that he founded and the organization he also founded, but in 1920 he ran out of money and worked two years as Academic Dean at what is now West Virginia State University near Charleston. From 1922 until his death he was able to work in Washington, D.C., on his journal and his organization. Author Jim Haskins (1941-2005) was an African-American author of over one hundred books, most devoted to telling the stories of prominent African-American. The co-author, Kathleen Benson, is now his widow. "Grade 4-6- Haskins and Benson give a well-written, balanced portrayal of Woodson's life and achievements. Reim's six black-and-white full-page illustrations are painted with bold images in the style of modern murals. Small figures along the bottom of the paintings look up as if viewing the scene from the street. The artwork depicts aspects of Woodson's life while containing elements symbolic of the African-American struggle. The artist explains each painting in an "Art Notes" section." - Eunice Weech
Brookfield, Connecticut: Millbrook Press, 2000. 48 pages with an Index and Bibliography, illustrated by Melanie Reim. 8.25" X 10.25" hardback with pictorial cover.