Updated: May 26
Title: A Day for Rememberin': Inspired by the True Events of the First Memorial Day (Rec grades: 1-4)
Did you know that May 1, 1865, is regarded as the first Memorial Day? It was called Decoration Day.
A Day for Rememberin' pays tribute to the little-known history behind the first Memorial Day in Charleston, SC, and reminds readers to honor the people who put their lives on the line for their country. Read more here: “Decoration Day” the Original Memo
A moving tribute to the little-known history behind the first Memorial Day, illustrated by Coretta Scott King Award winner Floyd Cooper
Today is a special day. Eli knows it’s important if he’s allowed to miss one second of school, his “hard-earned right.”
Inspired by true events and told through the eyes of a young boy, this is the deeply moving story about what is regarded as the first Memorial Day on May 1, 1865. Eli dresses up in his best clothes, Mama gathers the mayflowers, Papa straightens his hat, and together they join the crowds filling the streets of Charleston, South Carolina, with bouquets, crosses, and wreaths. Abolitionists, missionaries, teachers, military officers, and a sea of faces Black, Brown, and White, they march as one and sing for all those who gave their lives fighting for freedom during the Civil War.
With poignant prose and celebratory, powerful illustrations, A Day for Rememberin’ shines light on the little-known history of this important holiday and reminds us never to forget the people who put their lives on the line for their country. The book is illustrated by award-winning illustrator Floyd Cooper and includes archival photos in the back matter, as well as an author’s note, bibliography, timeline, and index.
VIDEO READ ALOUD
Watch Leah Henderson read A Day for Rememberin': Inspired by the True Events of the First Memorial Day on KidLit TV
(Author) Leah Henderson writes for young readers of all ages, and her books have been named a Children’s Africana Book Awards Notable and a Bank Street Best Book. Leah holds an MFA in writing and is on the faculty of Spalding University’s graduate writing program. She resides in Washington, D.C. Find her HERE
(Illustrator) Floyd Cooper the late Mr. Floyd Cooper is recognized and celebrated every year on the Friday of Children’s Book Week with Floyd Cooper day. The inaugural Floyd Cooper day was May 6, 2022. Learn more here: HERE
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