Missing from Haymarket Square by Harriette Gillem Robinet

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Her loving father's major concern is the struggle for better working conditions in factories and mills. Her mother thinks mostly of the terrible injury she has received in a sewing factory. Therefore Dinah Bell must care for herself. But not only herself. She and two other children, Austrian immigrants who do not mind that Dinah is the child of former slaves, not only work twelve-hour days to help support their families with the three dollars a week they each earn, but they do even more. All five families that depend on them for food live together in one rat-and-roach infested room in a Chicago tenement. The children steal, though they hate being thieves.

Other concerns vanish, however, when in the spring of 1886, Dinah's father is taken prisoner by the dreaded Pinkertons -- detectives who help factory owners get rid of unions and their organizers. Now, Dinah must find where her father is being held and free him. On May first there is a march of eighty thousand workers, demonstrating for an eight-hour day. The march is why Mr. Noah Bell has been taken prisoner, and the march and its aftermath, the Haymarket Riot, put Dinah in constant danger. Yet she is determined to succeed. Her father must be freed.

Once again Harriette Gillem Robinet portrays likeable children, with their needs and struggles, against a background of real events in American history. The result is an exciting story that reveals important truths about the American past.


About Harriette Gillem Robinet

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Harriette Gillem Robinet,a Washington, D.C., native, graduated from the College of New Rochelle, New York, and from graduate studies at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. She is a member of the National Writers Union.Robinet felt compelled to write the story of the labor struggle for the eight-hour day. In Chicago, emotions still boil over the Haymarket tragedy, and year-round wreaths are placed at the Haymarket Monument. She was proud to be present when that monument was made a national memorial.She and her husband, McLouis Robinet, live in Oak Park, Illinois, and have six children and four grandchildren.
Published July 1, 2001 by Atheneum. 144 pages
Genres: Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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This is very much fiction-with-a-mission, and it’s perfectly clear who the villains are, but the text strives to avoid oversimplification, including in its set pieces an encounter with a sympathetic police officer and a glimpse of the pressures brought to bear on the harsh manager of the factory ...

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This piece of history, and the focus on how African Americans took part in it, makes for an exciting read.Reviewed by on July 1, 2002 Missing from Haymarket Squareby Harriette Gillem Robinet View all » |

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