Brave Girl: Clara and the Shirtwaist Makers’ Strike of 1909 By Michelle Markel

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 Back of Book: When Clara arrived in America, she couldn’t speak English. She didn’t know that young women had to go to work, that they traded an education for long hours of labor, that she was expected to grow up fast. But that didn’t stop Clara. She went to night school, spent hours studying English, and helped support her family by sewing in a shirtwaist factory. Clara never quit, and she never accepted that girls should be treated poorly and paid little. Fed up with the mistreatment of her fellow laborers, Clara led the largest walkout of women workers the country had seen. From her short time in America, Clara learned that everyone deserved a fair chance. That you had to stand together and fight for what you wanted. And, most importantly, that you could do anything you put your mind to.

My Review:   I have recognized a trend of people looking for books with strong female roles. After I read this story I decided that it was a perfect example of what girls can accomplish. Clara is an immigrant girl who learns to fight for what she believes in. This picture book includes a bibliography and an author’s note on the garment industry. The descriptions in the story transported me to a tough place in America history. The book is well researched and can easily be used to teach a core part of our history.

Ages 8 and up

32 Pages

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