Lizzie Demands a Seat!: Elizabeth Jennings Fights for Streetcar Rights By Beth Anderson & E. B. Lewis

Back of Book:
One hundred years before Rosa Parks took her stand, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Jennings tried to board a streetcar in New York City on her way to church. Though there were plenty of empty seats, she was denied entry, assaulted, and threatened all because of her race–even though New York was a free state at that time. Lizzie decided to fight back. She told her story, took her case to court–where future president Chester Arthur represented her–and won! Her victory was the first recorded in the fight for equal rights on public transportation, and Lizzie’s case set a precedent.
My Review:
I received a digital copy of this book from author Beth Anderson in exchange for an honest review.
“Lizzie was in a hurry. A big hurry. The kind of hurry she couldn’t hold back.”
The opening sentence to this story immediately draws readers into the story of how Lizzie Jennings changed history. Lizzie was a twenty-four-year-old free black woman who was denied a seat on a streetcar. Instead of backing down, Lizzie decided that it was time to stand up. Lizzie wrote out her story and hired Chester Arthur to represent her in a courtroom battle that would change the course of history.
Beth Anderson did a fantastic job of bringing a fairly unknown and inspirational hero to life. Using compelling language and lyrical verse Beth describes the brave stand that Lizzie took against racism, segregation, and equality. Readers of all ages will feel encouraged to stand up for the right thing. The watercolor illustrations by E. B. Lewis are vivid and powerful.
The information in the back of the book shares more about the life of Lizzie Jennings as her case to be seen as equal.
This story is a perfect book to share during Black History Month or National Women’s Month. It allows readers to see that one person can make a difference.
Ages 6 and up
32 Pages

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