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"If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats." [Tell Me!]

Kids Read at the Library

United States, 1800's     View List as Printable PDF

The Midwest & the American Indian Experience

Chapter Books (J Fiction) -- Grades 3-8

ADALINE FALLING STAR

ADALINE FALLING STAR
by Osborne, Mary Pope

Feeling abandoned by her deceased Arapaho mother and her explorer father (Kit Carson,) Adaline Falling Star runs away from the prejudiced cousins with whom she is staying and comes close to death in the wilderness, with only a mongrel dog for company.

ADVENTUROUS DEEDS OF DEADWOOD JONES

ADVENTUROUS DEEDS OF DEADWOOD JONES
by Hemphill, Helen
J FICTION HEM
In the late 1800's, 13-year-old Prometheus Jones and his 11-year-old cousin Omer flee Tennessee and join a cattle drive that will eventually take them to Texas, where Prometheus hopes his father lives, and they find adventure and face challenges as African Americans in a land still recovering from the Civil War.

APPRENTICESHIP OF LUCAS WHITAKER

APPRENTICESHIP OF LUCAS WHITAKER
by DeFelice, Cynthia

12-year-old Lucas Whitaker, orphaned in 1849 when his entire family is claimed by consumption (tuberculosis,) takes a job as an apprentice with Doc Beecher. Here Lucas learns the truth about the difference between superstition and science while exploring an unusual treatment he hopes will be a cure for the disease.

BEAR DANCER: The Story of a Ute Girl

BEAR DANCER: The Story of a Ute Girl
by Wyss, Thelma

In late 19th-century Colorado, Elk Dress Girl, sister of Ute chief Ouray, is captured by Cheyenne and Arapaho warriors, rescued by the white "enemy," and finally returned to her home. Includes historical notes.

Birchbark House

Birchbark House
by Erdrich, Louise
J Fiction
Omakayas, a 7-year-old Native American girl of the Ojibwa tribe, through the joys of summer and the perils of winter on an island in Lake Superior in 1847.

BROTHERS OF THE HEART: A Story of the Old Northwest, 1837-1838

BROTHERS OF THE HEART: A Story of the Old Northwest, 1837-1838
by Blos, Joan W.

14-year-old Shem spends six months in the Michigan wilderness alone with a dying Indian woman, who helps him, not only to survive, to mature to the point where he can return to his family and the difficulties of life as a cripple in a frontier village.

CABIN ON TROUBLE CREEK

CABIN ON TROUBLE CREEK
by Van Leeuwen, Jean

In 1803 in Ohio, two young brothers are left to finish the log cabin and guard the land while their father goes back to Pennsylvania to fetch their mother and younger siblings.

CALEB'S STORY

CALEB'S STORY
by MacLachlan, Patricia

The stranger lurking on the Witting family's prairie farm turns out to be their long-lost grandfather, whose presence plus prodding from Sarah forces Jacob to deal with his past. Sequel to SKYLARK.

CHARLOTTE'S ROSE

CHARLOTTE'S ROSE
by Cannon, A.E.

As a 12-year-old Welsh immigrant carries a motherless baby along the Mormon Trail in 1856, she comes to love the baby as her own and fear the day the baby's father will reclaim her.

CHEYENNE AGAIN

CHEYENNE AGAIN
by Bunting, Eve

In the late 1880's, a Cheyenne boy named Young Bull is taken to a boarding school to learn the white man's ways.

Chickadee

Chickadee
Series Title: Birchbark House #4
by Erdrich, Louise
J FICTION ERD
In 1866, Omakayas's son Chickadee is kidnapped by two ne'er-do-well brothers from his own tribe and must make a daring escape, forge unlikely friendships, and set out on an exciting and dangerous journey to get back home. Sequel to THE PORCUPINE YEAR.

CROOKED RIVER

CROOKED RIVER
by Pearsall, Shelley

When 12-year old Rebecca Carter's father brings a Native American accused of murder into their 1812 Ohio settlement town, Rebecca, witnessing the town's reaction to the Indian, struggles with the idea that an innocent man may be convicted and sentenced to death.

GRANDFATHER'S DANCE

GRANDFATHER'S DANCE
by MacLachlan, Patricia

As her family gathers for the wedding of her sister Anna, 4th-grader Cassie Whiting sees the many changes brought about by everyday life and finds comfort in the love of those around her, her grandfather. Sequel to MORE PERFECT THAN THE MOON.

GREAT BRAIN

GREAT BRAIN
Series Title: Great Brain
by Fitzgerald, John D.

The exploits of the Great Brain of Adenville, Utah, in the late 1800's are described by his younger brother, frequently the victim of the Great Brain's schemes for gaining prestige or money.
1. Great Brain
2. More Adventures of the Great Brain
3. Me and My Little Brain
4. Great Brain at the Academy
5. Great Brain Reforms
6. Return of the Great Brain
7. Great Brain Does It Again
8. Great Brain Is Back

GREAT RAILROAD RACE

GREAT RAILROAD RACE
Series Title: Dear America
by Gregory, Kristiana
J FICTION GRE
Subtitle: The Diary of Libby West, Denver, 1868
As the daughter of a newspaper reporter, 14-year-old Libby keeps a diary account of the exciting events surrounding her during the building of the railroad in the West in 1868.

JOURNAL OF AUGUSTUS PELLETIER

JOURNAL OF AUGUSTUS PELLETIER
Series Title: My Name is America
by Lasky, Kathryn
J FICTION LAS
Subtitle: The Lewis and Clark Expedition, Western America, 1804
A fictional journal kept by 12-year-old Augustus Pelletier, the youngest member of Lewis and Clark's Corps of Discovery.

JOURNAL OF JESSE SMOKE

JOURNAL OF JESSE SMOKE
Series Title: My Name is America
by Bruchac, Joseph
J FICTION BRU
Subtitle: A Cherokee Boy, Trail of Tears, 1838
Jesse Smoke, a 16-year-old Cherokee, begins a journal in 1837 to record stories of his people and their difficulties as they face removal along the Trail of Tears. Includes a historical note giving details of the removal.

JOURNAL OF SEAN SULLIVAN

JOURNAL OF SEAN SULLIVAN
Series Title: My Name is America
by Durbin, William
J FICTION DUR
Subtitle: A Transcontinental Railroad Worker, Nebraska & Points West, 1867
In 1867, 15-year-old Sean experiences both hardships and rewards when he joins his father in working on the building of the Transcontinental Rairoad.

KEEPER OF THE DOVES

KEEPER OF THE DOVES
by Byars, Betsy

In the late 1800's in Kentucky, Amie McBee and her four sisters both fear and torment the reclusive and seemingly sinister Mr. Tominski, but their father continues to provide for his needs.

LAND OF THE BUFFALO BONES

LAND OF THE BUFFALO BONES
Series Title: Dear America
by Bauer, Marion Dane
J FICTION BAU
Subtitle: The diary of Mary Elizabeth Rodgers, an English girl in Minnesota, New Yeovil, Minnesota, 1873
14-year-old Polly Rodgers keeps a diary of her 1873 journey from England to Minnesota as part of a colony of eighty people seeking religious freedom, and of their first year struggling to make a life there, led by her father, a Baptist minister.

LINE IN THE SAND

LINE IN THE SAND
Series Title: Dear America
by Garland, Sherry
J FICTION GAR
Subtitle: The Alamo Diary of Lucinda Lawrence, Gonzales, Texas, 1836.
In the journal she receives for her 12th birthday in 1835, Lucinda Lawrence describes the hardships her family and other residents of the "Texas colonies" endure when they decide to face the Mexicans in a fight for their freedom.

Little House in Brookfield

Little House in Brookfield
Series Title: Caroline Years
by Wilkes, Maria
J FICTION WIL
This series takes place in Wisconsin in the 1800's and features the early years of Caroine Quiner, who would grow up to become the mother of Laura Ingalls Wilder. (Related to the Little House series.)
1. Little House in Brookfield
2. Little Town at the Crossroads
3. Little Clearing in the Woods
4. Little city by the Lake
5. Across the Rolling River, by Celia Wilkins

LITTLE HOUSE IN THE BIG WOODS

LITTLE HOUSE IN THE BIG WOODS
Series Title: LITTLE HOUSE
by Wilder, Laura Ingalls
J FICTION WIL
These are the original Little House books, now also known as "The Laura Years." The author bases her stories on her own pioneer family as they overcome hardships and adversity, yet are filled with the love, humor, and tenderness of a close-knit clan. The series takes place in the 1870's and 1880's, throughout many states in the midwest.
1. Little House in the Big Woods
2. Farmer Boy
3. Little House on the Prairie
4. On the Banks of Plum Creek
5. By the Shores of Silver Lake
6. Long Winter
7. Little Town on the Prairie
8. These Happy Golden Years
9. First Four Years

Little House on Rocky Ridge

Little House on Rocky Ridge
Series Title: Little House
by MacBride, Roger
J FICTION MAC
This series takes place in the late 1800's and early 1900's and follows the childhood of Rose, the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder, from her early years in Missouri, then to Louisiana, and finally to San Francisco.
1. Little House on Rocky Ridge
2. Little Farm in the Ozarks
3. In the Land of the Big Red Apple
4. On the Other Side of the Hill
5. Little Town in the Ozarks
6. New Dawn on Rocky Ridge
7. On the Banks of the Bayou
8. Bachelor Girl

MEET KIRSTEN

MEET KIRSTEN
Series Title: AMERICAN GIRLS
by Shaw, Janet

Nine-year-old Kirsten and her family experience many hardships as they travel from Sweden to the Minnesota frontier in 1854.
1. Meet Kirsten
2. Kirsten Learns a Lesson
3. Kirsten's Surprise
4. Happy Birthday, Kirsten
5. Kirsten Saves the Day
6. Changes for Kirsten

MISADVENTURES OF MAUDE MARCHE, OR, TROUBLE RIDES A FAST HORSE

MISADVENTURES OF MAUDE MARCHE, OR, TROUBLE RIDES A FAST HORSE
by Couloumbis, Audrey

After the death of the stern aunt who raised them since they were orphaned, 11-year-old Sallie and her 15-year-old sister escape their self-serving guardians and begin an adventure resembling those in the dime novels Sallie loves to read.

MORE PERFECT THAN THE MOON

MORE PERFECT THAN THE MOON
by MacLachlan, Patricia

8-year-old Cassie Witting is upset when she finds out that her mother, Sarah, is expecting a baby, but writing in the journal that belonged to her brother Caleb helps her sort out her feelings and understand that Sarah will always love her. Sequel to CALEB'S STORY.

MR. TUCKET

MR. TUCKET
Series Title: TUCKET ADVENTURE
by Paulsen, Gary
J FICTION PAU
In 1848, while on a wagon train headed for Oregon, 14-year-old Francis Tucket is kidnapped by Pawnee Indians and then falls in with a one-armed trapper who teaches him how to live in the wild. The series portrays the rough life of the frontiersmen, including encounters with ruthless outlaws and hunting for gold.
1. Mr. Tucket
2. Call Me Francis Tucket
3. Tucket's Ride
4. Tucket's Gold
5. Tucket's Home

MY DANIEL

MY DANIEL
by Conrad, Pam

Ellie and Stevie learn about a family legacy when their grandmother tells them stories of her brother's historical quest for dinosaur bones on their Nebraska farm.

MY FACE TO THE WIND

MY FACE TO THE WIND
Series Title: Dear America
by Murphy, Jim
J FICTION MUR
Subtitle: The Diary of Sarah Jane Price, a Prairie Teacher, Broken Bow, Nebraska, 1881
Following her father's death from a disease that swept through her Nebraska town in 1881, teenaged Sarah Jane must find work to support herself and records in her diary her experiences as a young school teacher.

NEXT SPRING AN ORIOLE

NEXT SPRING AN ORIOLE
by Whelan, Gloria

In 1837, 10-year-old Libby and her parents journey by covered wagon to the Michigan frontier, where they make themselves a new home near friendly Indians and other pioneers.

NIGHT OF THE FULL MOON

NIGHT OF THE FULL MOON
by Whelan, Gloria

When she sneaks away to visit her friend, a young girl living on the Michigan frontier is caught up in the forced evacuation of a group of Potawatomi Indians from their tribal lands in the 1840's. Sequel to NEXT SPRING AN ORIOLE.

ON THE LONG TRAIL HOME

ON THE LONG TRAIL HOME
by Stewart, Elisabeth Jane

Meli and her brother Tahlikwa escape from the Cherokee people being herded westward on the Trail of Tears, determined to return to their beloved mountain home.

PIONEER SUMMER

PIONEER SUMMER
Series Title: PRAIRIE SKIES
by Hopkinson, Deborah
J FICTION HOP
At first reluctant to move to Kansas despite his parents' enthusiasm, 8-year-old Charles has many adventures in his new home, from nearly falling through the ice on a frozen pond to fighting a prairie fire threatening their cabin.
1. PIONEER SUMMER
2. CABIN IN THE SNOW
3. OUR KANSAS HOME

PRAIRIE SCHOOL

PRAIRIE SCHOOL
by Avi

In 1880, Noah's aunt teaches the reluctant 9-year-old how to read as they explore the Colorado prairie together, Noah pushing Aunt Dora in her wheelchair.

SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL

SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL
by MacLachlan, Patricia

When their father invites a mail-order bride to come live with them in their prairie home, Caleb and Anna are captivated by their new mother and hope that she will stay. (Newbery Award winner)

SKYLARK

SKYLARK
by MacLachlan, Patricia

When a drought tests the commitment of a mail-order bride from Maine to her new home on the prairie, her stepchildren hope they will be able to remain a family. Sequel to SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL.

SNOWBIRD

SNOWBIRD
by Calvert, Patricia
J FIC CAL
Following the murder of her parents, Willanna faces an uncertain future as she and her younger brother move from Tennessee in 1883 to the Dakota Territory where she trains her first horse.

STOP THE TRAIN!

STOP THE TRAIN!
by McCaughrean, Geraldine

Despite the opposition of the owner of the Red Rock Runner railroad in 1893, the new settlers of Florence, Oklahoma, are determined to build a real town.

Tales from Gold Mountain: stories of the Chinese in the New World

Tales from Gold Mountain: stories of the Chinese in the New World
by Yee, Paul
J Fiction
A collection of eight stories reflecting the gritty optimism of the Chinese who overcame prejudice and adversity to build a unique place for themselves in North America.

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate
by Kelly, Jacqueline
J FICTION KEL
In central Texas in 1899, 11-year-old Callie Vee Tate learns about love from the older three of her six brothers and studies the natural world with her grandfather which leads to an important discovery.

The Game of Silence

The Game of Silence
by Erdrich, Louise
J FICTION
Nine-year-old Omakayas and her family, members of the Ojibwa tribe, are forced to leave their island on Lake Superior in 1850 when white settlers move into the territory, and comes to realize that the things most important to her are her home and way of life. Sequel to THE BIRCHBARK HOUSE

The Porcupine Year

The Porcupine Year
by Erdrich, Louise
J FICTION
In 1852, forced by the United States government to leave their beloved Island of the Golden Breasted Woodpecker, 14-year-old Omokayas and her Ojibwe family travel in search of a new home. Sequel to THE GAME OF SILENCE.

 

Books for Teens (YA Fiction)

FAIR WEATHER

FAIR WEATHER
by Peck, Richard

In 1893, 13-year-old Rosie and members of her family travel from their Illinois farm to Chicago to visit Aunt Euterpe and attend the World's Columbian Exposition which, along with an encounter with Buffalo Bill and Lillian Russell, turns out to be a life-changing experience for everyone.

MISSISSIPPI JACK: Being an Account of the Further Waterborne Adventures of Jacky Faber, Midshipman, Fine Lady, and the Lily of the West

MISSISSIPPI JACK: Being an Account of the Further Waterborne Adventures of Jacky Faber, Midshipman, Fine Lady, and the Lily of the West
Series Title: Bloody Jack Adventure
by Meyer, L.A.

In 1806, the exploits of Jacky Faber continue as she heads west to avoid capture by the British and discovers adventure aboard a keelboat the mighty Mississippi River. Sequel to BLOODY JACK

PRAIRIE WHISPERS

PRAIRIE WHISPERS
by Arrington, Frances

Only 12-year-old Colleen knows that her baby sister died just after she was born and that Colleen put another baby in her place, until the baby's father shows up and makes trouble for her and her family on the South Dakota prairie in the 1860's.