The Cemetery Keepers of Gettysburg
Publication Date: April 3, 2007
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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It was a hot and buggy afternoon in the summer of 1862, when Peter Thorn, the cemetery tender of Gettysburg, left his pregnant wife and three small sons to join the Union army. In his absence, his family would bear witness to the most ferocious and bloody battle of the Civil War.
On July 1, 1863, a shell exploded in the Thorn's kitchen when the brutal Battle of Gettysburg began. The cannons sounded on Cemetery Hill, as more than 51,000 soldiers were killed, wounded, or captured during the three day battle. For days after the battle, seven-year-old Fred, his pregnant mother, Elizabeth, and his grandfather worked to honor the dead by digging graves and burying Union and Confederate soldiers.
Neither the Thorn family nor the rest of America would be the same again after witnessing the terrible toll the battle took. Though the Gettysburg Address paid tribute to the soldiers who lost their lives, this is a tribute to the family that so dutifully tended to the soldiers after they had fallen.
Linda Oatman High is the author of sixteen books for children and teens. She received the news that The Cemetery Tenders of Gettysburg would be published mere hours after visiting Elizabeth Thorn's grave for the first time. She says, "Call it coincidence, but it was very eerie timing!" In addition to being an author, Linda is also a journalist and a songwriter. She lives in Narvon, Pennsylvania, with her family and two dogs. Visit her Web site at www.lindaoatmanhigh.com.
Laura Francesca Filippucci attended the Istituto Europeo di Design and later the School of Visual Arts in New York City, where she specialized in children's book illustration. While working on the book, Laura felt a kinship with Elizabeth Thorn as her children were the same ages as Laura's. She has worked for many American and European magazine and book publishers, and lives in Milan with her husband and three children.
From Kirkus Reviews*Starred Review* Readers will be touched and sobered by this deeply felt glimpse of battle, and what follows. --Kirkus Reviews