Fearless Mary: Mary Fields, American Stagecoach Driver (Coming 2019)

 
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Believing in yourself!  Knowing you CAN do it!  Sometimes it just isn't easy to hold that confidence inside yourself with all the challenges coming from the outside world.

Back in 1895 an ex-slave, a woman, named Mary Fields had a chance to show the world she COULD do it.  Mary heard about a job opening up in Cascade, Montana.  Now Cascade Montana in 1895 was not exactly the place that celebrated women who were ex-slaves.  There were all kinds of signs around the town saying Whites Only this and Whites Only that.

But, Mary knew she had what it took.  She saw the other signs..the signs that advertised a job-opening.  Seems they needed someone to drive a stagecoach up into the mountains to take food and letters and other important cargo to a school, Saint Peter's Mission.

Now, if you've read Pam Munoz Ryan's book RIDING FREEDOM, you might know a little bit about stagecoach driving and just how hard it was.  But listen to this.  To get this job you had  to be willing to fend off wolves, to fight against robbers along the trail, to take care of yourself out in the wilderness.

Men were invited to compete to get the stagecoach driver job.  They had to saddle up a team of horses to a stagecoach and lasso horses on the run.  When Mary stepped up to take a turn, she was told the job was not for her.  Did she stop?  Did she agree to be invisible?

Step back in time and visit Montana around the turn into the 20th century.  Meet a  woman who was strong inside and out.  Ask yourself what you would have done if they had told you, "NO."

This is a great adventure story about a woman and her eagle.  It gives us a wonderful piece of relatively unknown African American history/herstory and it's filled with a resounding message of hope and validation for anyone who is marginalized in this day and age whether because of gender, race, sexuality, country of origin.... you name it.

This book is about believing in yourself and knowing your own worth no matter what outside voices might be saying.    It's your turn to be fearless.  Go for it.

32 pages                   978-0807523056                       Ages 5-9

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A little-known but fascinating and larger-than-life character, Mary Fields is one of the unsung, trailblazing African American women who helped settle the American West. A former slave, Fields became the first African American woman stagecoach driver in 1895, when, in her 60s, she beat out all the cowboys applying for the job by being the fastest to hitch a team of six horses.

She won the dangerous and challenging job, and for many years traveled the badlands with her pet eagle, protecting the mail from outlaws and wild animals, never losing a single horse or package. Fields helped pave the way for other women and people of color to become stagecoach drivers and postal workers.--from the publisher

32 pages         978-0807523056          Ages 5-9

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