Saturday, January 28, 2012

Imogene's Last Stand

Imogene Tripp is no ordinary little girl.

Imogene Tripp loves history and isn’t afraid to tell the world.

Imogene Tripp sets out to save her town’s historical society and save it she does in the wonderful children’s book “Imogene’s Last Stand”.

Lettie Haver of the Paul Clarke Non-Profit Resource Center, located in the main branch of the Allen County Public Library, showed me this book on Friday while we were visiting about the History Center, this blog and ways to tell our story to those who have yet to discover all of the wonderful facets of our museum’s work.

Lettie’s slightly younger than me--actually, I’m old enough to be her mother—and we had a good discussion about how we tend to view history. For me, the Vietnam War was a part of growing up and had a major impact on how I view government, politics and civic involvement. For her, it’s history.

Why do we teach history in our schools? My home state of Nebraska is looking at a re-evaluation of social studies curriculums. See

Here’s a good question to get a conversation rolling: What’s the purpose of teaching social studies in our schools?

As a mother of young children and a library employee, Lettie knows the value of parents using the library to teach children about their world. Imogene’s story was a recent hit at her house and so we walked down to the children’s section to pull the volume from the shelves. (And if you’re an adult with adult children…or no children…and have not been into the children’s department at ACPL, do yourself a favor and make a side trip. The place is amazing.)

Winter is a good time to curl up with a book. Why not make it a book about history?

One of the facets of motherhood I enjoyed the most was learning new things with my son. It’s good for kids to have parents who spark an interest in learning and intellectual growth and a public library is a good place to start. Check out (figuratively and literally) the ACPL’s children’s section to see what books you discover on history and do a little reading.

The History Center’s got a great selection of books for all ages about history in our gift shop too.

Imogene Tripp will introduce you to Abraham Lincoln, The Oregon Trail, Davy Crockett, William Morris (who was new to me, so see…you’re never too old to learn something new), John Paul Jones, Paul Revere, Teddy Roosevelt, Chief Joseph, Vietnam War Protestors, Martin Van Buren (I learned something about him I didn’t know before), Eleanor Roosevelt and Dr. Martin Luther King.

Although I don’t agree with King 100% on this…here’s a quote by King that appears in Imogene’s book that you can ponder:

“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”

Imogene’s Last Stand was written by Candace Fleming and illustrated by Nancy Carpenter. Copyright 2009. Schwartz and Wade Books, a division of Random House Children’s Books.

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