Sink or Swim: African-American Lifesavers of the Outer Banks

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9781928556015: Sink or Swim: African-American Lifesavers of the Outer Banks

When ships were in trouble off the treacherous coast of North Carolinas Outer Banks, the courageous black lifesavers at Pea Island Station were first on the sceneand in the water. Through raging storms, pitch-black nights, and hurricanes, these surfmen performed amazing, death-defying rescues. For over seven decades, the intrepid crews battled fierce waves and racial prejudice. Ultimately, they received the recognition they richly deservedin 1996, more than a century after they broke the color barrier. Sink or Swim: African-American Lifesavers of the Outer Banks is the story of their heroism, their struggle, and their triumph.

With dozens of historic prints and photographs, this documentary history is the first book about the U.S. Lifesaving Services only all-black crew. Spanning slavery times, the Civil War, Emancipation, Reconstruction and the Jim Crow era, Sink or Swim recalls this little-known chapter in American and North Carolinian history. Mixing adventure and social discord, the informative, action-packed narrative will enhance young readers understanding of coastal conditions and how slavery and other racial barriers affected African Americans lives. Readers witness violent storms, courageous rescues, tragic losses, and the lifesavers ultimate victory over prejudice. Their story is both powerful and empowering; in fact, it was said that Alex Haleys next project, had he lived, would have been to tell the Pea Island surfmens tale.

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From the Publisher:

Sink or Swim is the premier book in a series focusing on the African-American experience in coastal North Carolina.

Intended for young people between the ages of nine and fourteen, Sink or Swim will be a valuable inspiration for children seeking positive black role models, as the Pea Island lifesavers shouldered great responsibility at a time when few African Americans held positions of authority. Mixing adventure and social discord, this informative, action-packed narrative will enhance young readers understanding of coastal conditions and how slavery and other racial barriers affected African Americans lives.

About the Author:

Carole Boston Weatherford is the author of several books for young people, including Grandma and Me; Mighty Menfolk; Me and the Family Tree; and Juneteenth Jamboree. She also authored The Tan Chanteuse, a prize-winning poetry chapbook. Among her many honors are a North Carolina Arts Council Writers' Fellowship, the North Carolina Poetry Society Caldwell Nixon Award, a North Carolina Press Association Award and the Furious Flower Poetry Prize.

Her articles and essays have been published in The Christian Science Monitor, Essence, the Washington Post, the Charlotte Observer and the Raleigh News & Observer. Beyond the printed page, her work has been exhibited at the Chicago Children's Museum and has aired on public radio. When she's not writing, she conducts performances, workshops and readings for educational and cultural institutions. She lives with her family in High Point, North Carolina.

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Weatherford, Carole Boston
Published by Coastal Carolina Press (1999)
ISBN 10: 1928556019 ISBN 13: 9781928556015
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Book Description Coastal Carolina Press, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P111928556019

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Weatherford, Carole Boston
Published by Coastal Carolina Press
ISBN 10: 1928556019 ISBN 13: 9781928556015
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Book Description Coastal Carolina Press. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1928556019 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.1744043

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