Steely Library phone number: 859.572.5457
Civil War Non-Fiction Pairs
Non-fiction Pairs: Books and Websites for the Classroom – The Civil War
By Lynn Warner
Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War
Abraham Lincoln, our 16th President, led the fractured country through the Civil War. In Mr. Lincoln's High-Tech War by Thomas B. Allen and Roger MacBride Allen (2008), find out how President Lincoln's used technology in the North's Civil War victory over the South, and take a look into the specific technologies used by the North in the war. In What Lincoln Said, Sarah L. Thomson integrates Abraham Lincoln's famous words to tell the story of Lincoln's life from a farm boy to a lawyer in Springfield, Illinois, to the President of the United States. This book deftly illustrates Lincoln's passions, sense of humor, strength, and flexibility for younger children. A teacher's guide to using the book can be found at http://home.earthlink.net/~slthomson/pdf/what_lincoln_said_guide.pdf. This includes activities and other links. For digitized copies of Lincoln's speeches and correspondence, visit the Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress. Over 20,000 documents follow the 1850s through Lincoln's time in the White House, and other treasures include the Emancipation Proclamation and a draft of his second Inaugural Address. For a look into Lincoln's private life, read Mr. Lincoln's Boys by Staton Rabin (2008). This book provides an insider's look at the life of this famous president and the two rambunctious sons he raised while serving in the White House during the dark days of the Civil War. Pair this book with Mr. Lincoln's White House, a site dedicated to the four years and one month of Lincoln's presidency and the house in which his family resided.
Civil War Battles
One of the most famous speeches ever made is the Gettysburg address. In C.M. Butzer's Gettysburg: The Graphic Novel (2009), follow (in graphic novel format) the Battle of Gettysburg, the national movement to create a memorial there, and the quiet day in 1863 when President Lincoln delivered his galvanizing speech. For a more eyewitness account of a Civil War battle, check out Under Siege!: Three Children at the Civil War Battle for Vicksburg by Andrea Warren (2009). This book looks at the 1862-63 battle for Vicksburg through the eyes of three children: ten-year-old Lucy, the daughter of a Vicksburg merchant; eleven-year-old Willie, the son of a minister; and twelve-year old Frederick, the son of Ulysses S. Grant. For more information on Ulysses S. Grant, visit http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/grant/index.html. Here, students can play a game entitled "You're the General" where the player gets to make war decisions through the eyes of General Grant. For other real eyewitness accounts, look to http://www.eyewitnesstohistory.com/cwfrm.htm, where several regular citizens reports of the war are recorded. In The Silent Witness: a true story of the Civil War by Robin Friedman (2005), Lula McLean and her family relocate to Appomattox Court House, Virginia, to escape Civil War troops, only to be visited by soldiers four years later, on April 9, 1865, when General Robert E. Lee surrenders to General Ulysses S. Grant. For a discussion guide, links and activities related to this book, visit The Silent Witness: A True Story of the Civil War.
Civil War Submarine
The South had a secret weapon against the Union force's ever-tightening blockade: a submarine. The H.L. Hunley is considered the world's first successful combat submarine. In Sally M. Walker's book, Secrets of a Civil War Submarine: Solving the Mysteries of the H.L. Hunley (2005), the history of the submarine is presented for older children and teens. Look inside the Hunley's construction, mysterious sinking, recovery, and restoration. For younger children, turn to Kate Boehm Jerome's Civil War Sub: the mystery of the Hunley (2002). This book recounts events surrounding the mysterious sinking of the H.L. Hunley, and its recent recovery from deep in the waters off the coast of South Carolina. Pair these books with the Friends of the Hunley website, for all things Hunley! Go inside the submarine in an online tour, play a video game where you control the Hunley in a training mission. Find out more about the Hunley's missions, recovery, and conservation. At the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, find a short history of the H.L. Hunley, its builder and namesake, as well as a digitized copy of the proposal to use a submarine during the Civil War.
Other Civil War Books
A major issue in the Civil War was the "peculiar institution" of slavery. In Traveling the Freedom Road: From Slavery and the Civil War through Reconstruction by Linda Barrett Osborne (2009), the history of slavery in the United States is presented, from the early establishment of the slave trade prior to the American Revolution, to the abolitionist movement, emancipation, and the upheavals of the Reconstructive period of the late nineteenth century. To bring these stories alive, visit the Library of Congress's Voices from the Days of Slavery. Seven former slaves were interviewed, each giving their own perspective on what it was like to be born into slavery.
Through a review of their family and an examination of their political ideologies, Good Brother, Bad Brother by James Cross Giblin (2005) presents a look at two brothers who stood on opposing sides during the Civil War and how one, John Wilkes Booth, became the infamous assassin of President Abraham Lincoln. A teacher's guide to the book can be found at http://www.hmhbooks.com/readers_guides/giblin/.
Other Great SitesThe Making of America This is a digital library of primary sources in American social history from the antebellum period through reconstruction. Here you can browse the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies as well as the War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies.
Search by year, today's date in Lincoln's Life, or any other date of interest to see Lincoln's activities.
Find over 400 Lincoln-related cartoons derived from 21 illustrated journals of the period. The site spans the period from his presidential campaign in 1860 through the major events of the Civil War to his assassination in 1865.
Civil War Sub: the mystery of the Hunley. By Kate Boehm Jerome. 2002. 48p. Grosset & Dunlap, $3.99 (978-0448425979). Ages 7-9.
Gettysburg: The Graphic Novel. By C.M. Butzer. 2009. 80p. HarperCollins, $16.99 (978-0061561764). Gr. 3-9/older kids.
Good Brother, Bad Brother. By James Cross Giblin. 2005. 256p. Clarion Books, $22.00 (978-0618096428). Gr. 4-9/teens.
Y E457.5 .G53 2005
Mr. Lincoln's Boys. By Staton Rabin. 2008. 36p. Viking Juvenile, $16.99 (0670061697). Gr. K-4/older kids.
Y E457.25 .R236 2008
Mr. Lincoln's High-Tech War. By Thomas B. Allen and Roger MacBride Allen. 2008. 144p. National Geographic Children's Books, $18.95 (978-1426303791). Gr. 4-12.
Y E468.9 .A44 2009
Secrets of a Civil War Submarine: Solving the Mysteries of the H.L. Hunley. By Sally M. Walker. 2005. 112p. Carolrhoda Books, $18.95 (978-1575058306). Gr. 6-10/teens.
Y E599.H4 W35 2005
The Silent Witness: a true story of the Civil War. By Robin Friedman. 2005. 32p. Sandpiper, $6.99 (978-0547014364). Gr. Prekindergarten -4/younger kids.
Traveling the Freedom Road: From Slavery and the Civil War through Reconstruction. By Linda Barrett Osborne. 2009. 128p. Abrams Books for Young Readers, $24.95 (978-0810983380). Gr. 4-12/older kids.
Y E185.18 .O83 2009
What Lincoln Said. By Sarah L. Thomson. 2009. 32p. Collins, $17.99 (0060848197). Gr. K-3/younger kids.
Under Siege!: Three Children at the Civil War Battle for Vicksburg. By Andrea Warren. 2009. 176p. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $21.95 (978-0374312558). Gr. 4-9/older kids.
Y E475.27 .W37 2009
Steely Library phone number: 859.572.5457