Dreaming of America: An Ellis Island Story (International Reading Association Teacher's Choice Award)

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9780816765218: Dreaming of America: An Ellis Island Story (International Reading Association Teacher's Choice Award)
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Annie Moore cares for her brothers on board the ship sailing to America and becomes the first immigrant processed through Ellis Island

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 2-4-On January 1, 1892, her 15th birthday, Annie Moore of Cork, Ireland, became the first immigrant to enter the United States through the new facilities at Ellis Island. This fictionalized account describes her voyage across the Atlantic on the SS Nevada with her two younger brothers to join their parents in New York after a three-year separation. Shipboard life in their third-class accommodations, the welcoming ceremony upon landing, and the emotions of the children are described in text and illustration. Despite a somewhat posed, static quality, the realistic illustrations are effective and rich in vibrant blues and browns. Set on flecked, beige paper, they often spill onto the second page of a spread. On several occasions, they are paired with reproductions of archival photographs and records, including the ship's passenger list with the names of the Moore children. An afterword gives what little information is known about Annie and includes a photo of her with her firstborn child. A solid account of a journey that many immigrants made at the turn of the century.
Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist:

Annie Moore was the first Irish immigrant to be processed on Ellis Island, and she landed there on her fifteenth birthday in 1892. Based on her story, this picture book follows the classic immigrant pattern: the scary leavetaking of loving relatives; the long, difficult journey, with Annie caring for her two younger brothers in a cramped cabin; and, finally, the reunion with parents who had gone ahead to find a place. The full-page illustrations are a little glossy and glamorous (not a scarf or button out of place, even when the kids are huddled in steerage), and Annie's character is idealized (she never says an irritable word), but the long text is packed with information that will interest many readers, both for school reports and for the connections with their own family stories. The occasional period photos and prints--of the ship's passenger list with Annie and her brothers' names; of the Annie Moore statue in Ireland--add authenticity to this drama of ordinary people on a hard journey home. Hazel Rochman

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