Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt
Publication Date: January 14, 2003
Other Editions of This Title: , Prebound
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As a seamstress in the Big House, Clara is luckier than the slaves who work the fields. Still, she dreams of a reunion with her Momma, who lives on another plantation–and even of running away to freedom. Then she hears two slaves talking about how they could find the Underground Railroad if only they had a map. In a flash of inspiration, Clara sees how she can use the cloth in her scrap bag to make a map of the land–a freedom quilt–that no master will ever suspect. Drawn from true incidents in African-American history, this is a compelling and emotionally charged picture book.
Born in North Carolina, James Ransome is a graduate of the Pratt Institute with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in illustration. While still a student at Pratt, James was one of twelve finalists out of two thousand selected to illustrate the annual Citibank calendar. After graduation, James continued to study painting at the Art Students League where his entry
into the Society of Illustrators Annual Student Scholarship Competition received the Jellybean award.
Currently a member of the Society of Illustrators, James has illustrated numerous books for children, including Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt and Freedom's Fruit. His illustrations also appear on book jackets, greeting cards, puzzles and shopping bags, as well as in magazines and calendars. One of James's paintings is in the Charlotte (North Carolina) Public Library's permanent children's book art collection.
James currently lives in Poughkeepsie, New York, with his wife, Lesa, their two daughters, and
their Dalmatian, Clinton.
"A particularly effective way to introduce the subject to younger children, adding a trenchant immediacy to their understanding of a difficult but important chapter in the country's past."--(starred) Horn Book.
"This first-rate book is a triumph of the heart."--(starred) Publishers Weekly.
“Straightforward and inspiring . . . vivid and textured paintings support the words well.” –The New York Times