Reviews for Going Home to Nicodemus : The Story of an African American Frontier Town and the Pioneers Who Settled It


Horn Book Guide Reviews 1995
*Settled It Using documented research and interviews with descendants of original settlers, the book recounts the history of the all-black settlement of Nicodemus, Kansas, established in the 1870s by freed slaves. Readers may be distracted by the inclusion of voluminous but relevant background material in this book that fills yet another gap in America's story. Black-and-white photographs accompany the history. Bib., ind. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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School Library Journal Reviews 1995 November
Gr 6 Up?Founded by freed slaves in the 1870s, Nicodemus, Kansas, grew from a series of holes dug in the ground for shelter to a bustling black community with churches, schools, stores, and well-kept homes. Chu and Shaw trace its history by using archival material, old newspapers, and interviews with current and former residents. The early settlers experienced all kinds of hardships and difficulties, but persevered and overcame the harsh weather conditions of the plains. What they could not ultimately overcome were the Great Depression and the racism of their neighbors. Of course, all was not toil and gloom. This book is filled with a joy that comes from a shared history, from being with family and friends, and from the knowledge that life on the plains, as bad as it often was, was infinitely better than a life of slavery. The book is informative, clearly and simply written, and illustrated with black-and-white photographs of the town, then and now, and of the families who settled it. Nicodemus and its people take on a life worth knowing about.?Carol Jones Collins, Montclair Kimberley Academy, NJ

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