Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850

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9781455857036: Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850
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In 1845, a disaster struck Ireland. Overnight, a mysterious blight attacked the potato crops, turning the potatoes black and destroying the only real food of nearly six million people. Over the next five years, the blight attacked again and again. These years are known today as the Great Irish Famine, a time when one million people died from starvation and disease and two million more fled their homeland. Susan Campbell Baroletti tells the compelling story of men, women, and children who survived against all odds: they defied landlords and searched empty fields for scraps of harvested vegetables and edible weeds, walked several miles each day to hard-labor jobs to earn meager wages and to reach soup kitchens, and committed crimes just to go to jail, where they were assured a meal. Black Potatoes is the story of the heroes among the Irish people and how they held on to hope. “Bartoletti incorporates period pen-and-ink sketches and poetry laying bare the fragility, injustice, and stratification of Irish peasant society...Fascinating historical reading.” – School Library Journal, starred review “Bartoletti humanizes the big events by bringing the reader up close to the lives of ordinary people.” – Booklist, starred review

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About the Author:

Susan Campbell Bartoletti is the award-winning author of several books for young readers, including Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845–1850, winner of the Robert F. Sibert Medal. She lives in Moscow, Pennsylvania.

Review:

Gr 6-10-When most American teens talk about hunger, it's that growling sensation before meals. Famine is beyond their ken, an abstraction made only marginally concrete by TV images of the Third World. In the Irish potato famine of 1845-50, it was Europeans starving to death, and the impact on Ireland (one million dead, two million fled) and on the U.S. was staggering (those immigrants came here). The chronology of the disaster unfolds in this gruelingly poignant text that draws heavily on news reports and first-person narratives. Bartoletti's title also incorporates period pen-and-ink sketches and poetry laying bare the fragility, injustice, and stratification of Irish peasant society that could not cope with agricultural tumult. People lived on potatoes-and only potatoes-while growing profitable exports for British landlords. When the crops mysteriously failed repeatedly over the next five years, the peasants simply starved to death while the social structure of the society nearly died along with the populace. Relief efforts were brutally incompetent where they existed at all, and only the Quakers emerge as heroes of mercy. The bibliography (also narrative) provides some of the most fascinating historical reading in the book. Overall, a useful addition to collections, for both personal and research uses.

Mary R. Hofmann, Rivera Middle School, Merced, CA

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

(School Library Journal )

*Starred Review* Gr. 6-12. Through the voices of the Irish people, Bartoletti tells the history of the Great Irish Famine of the late 1840s. Eyewitness accounts and memories combine with devastating facts: one million died from starvation and disease; two million emigrated; the famine could have been avoided; the legacy was a bitter resentment against the English, who owned most of Ireland. The year-by-year political history is occasionally heavy going; but, as she did in Growing Up in Coal Country (1996), a Booklist Editors' Choice, Bartoletti humanizes the big events by bringing the reader up close to the lives of ordinary people. There are heartbreaking accounts of evictions, of the Irish starving while food is exported to England, and of deaths in the coffin ships that took the desperate to North America. The text is broken up with many black-and-white drawings from newspapers of the time, and a long final essay includes information about books, primary sources, library collections, and Web sites that readers can turn to for school reports and for research into their own family histories. It's a wonder there are so few nonfiction books about this subject for young people. Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved. (Booklist )

It is estimated that in the 1840s, each person in Ireland ate between 7 and 15 pounds of potatoes a day, and many animals ate potatoes as well. But when a fungus attacked the fields, a crisis quickly developed. The Great Famine led to even further resentment against the governing English after the death of a million from starvation and disease and the scattering of some two million more, and it strengthened the determination of the Irish to overcome such adversity and survive as a people. Vivid stories were collected from descendants of the famine-stricken poor, and powerful pen-and-ink sketches from contemporary newspapers make clear the dire situation of those who were evicted and the many who were starving. Ethnic and religious prejudices are presented realistically, and there are references to the present crisis in many societies and what the appropriate response should be today when human beings lack access to food. A powerful and important book. KLIATT Codes: JSA—Recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 2001, Houghton Mifflin, 184p. illus. map. bibliog. index., Ages 12 to adult. (K.L.I.A.T.T.-Maureen Griffin )

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9780618548835: Black Potatoes: The Story of the Great Irish Famine, 1845-1850

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ISBN 10:  0618548831 ISBN 13:  9780618548835
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Book Description BRILLIANCE AUDIO, United States, 2012. CD-Audio. Condition: New. Unabridged. Language: English . Brand New. In 1845, a disaster struck Ireland. Overnight, a mysterious blight attacked the potato crops, turning the potatoes black and destroying the only real food of nearly six million people. Over the next five years, the blight attacked again and again. These years are known today as the Great Irish Famine, a time when one million people died from starvation and disease and two million more fled their homeland. Black Potatoes is the compelling story of men, women, and children who defied landlords and searched empty fields for scraps of harvested vegetables and edible weeds to eat, who walked several miles each day to hard-labor jobs for meager wages and to reach soup kitchens, and who committed crimes just to be sent to jail, where they were assured of a meal. It s the story of children and adults who suffered from starvation, disease, and the loss of family and friends, as well as those who died. Black Potatoes is the story of the heroes among the Irish people and how they held on to hope. Seller Inventory # BRI9781455857036

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Book Description BRILLIANCE AUDIO, United States, 2012. CD-Audio. Condition: New. Unabridged. Language: English . Brand New. In 1845, a disaster struck Ireland. Overnight, a mysterious blight attacked the potato crops, turning the potatoes black and destroying the only real food of nearly six million people. Over the next five years, the blight attacked again and again. These years are known today as the Great Irish Famine, a time when one million people died from starvation and disease and two million more fled their homeland. Black Potatoes is the compelling story of men, women, and children who defied landlords and searched empty fields for scraps of harvested vegetables and edible weeds to eat, who walked several miles each day to hard-labor jobs for meager wages and to reach soup kitchens, and who committed crimes just to be sent to jail, where they were assured of a meal. It s the story of children and adults who suffered from starvation, disease, and the loss of family and friends, as well as those who died. Black Potatoes is the story of the heroes among the Irish people and how they held on to hope. Seller Inventory # BRI9781455857036

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Book Description BRILLIANCE AUDIO, United States, 2012. CD-Audio. Condition: New. Unabridged. Language: English . Brand New. In 1845, a disaster struck Ireland. Overnight, a mysterious blight attacked the potato crops, turning the potatoes black and destroying the only real food of nearly six million people. Over the next five years, the blight attacked again and again. These years are known today as the Great Irish Famine, a time when one million people died from starvation and disease and two million more fled their homeland. Black Potatoes is the compelling story of men, women, and children who defied landlords and searched empty fields for scraps of harvested vegetables and edible weeds to eat, who walked several miles each day to hard-labor jobs for meager wages and to reach soup kitchens, and who committed crimes just to be sent to jail, where they were assured of a meal. It s the story of children and adults who suffered from starvation, disease, and the loss of family and friends, as well as those who died. Black Potatoes is the story of the heroes among the Irish people and how they held on to hope. Seller Inventory # BTE9781455857036

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