|Revolutionary Prudence Wright: Leading the Minute Women in the fight for independence
Beth Anderson; Illustrated by Susan Reagan
Calkins Creek. An imprint of Astra Books for Young Readers. 2022
A story of the American Revolution through the eyes of a white woman, Prudence Cummings Wright.
Born on November 26, 1740, one hundred and ten years after her ancestors came to America, Prudence Cummings was independent. Though she could do all the things expected of a woman of her time - knit, sew, spin, cook - she also attended school, hunted, fished, and was welcomed into the family discussion on politics.
As King George III of England tightened his grip on the colonies, imposing more taxes and restrictions, the Patriots, those opposed to English rule, organized themselves. When, the Revolutionary War began with the midnight ride of Paul Revere, the men of Pepperell, Massachusetts took up arms to push the Redcoats back to Boston. As rumors spread that “Redcoats were coming! Ransacking homes! Burning shops! Tory spies!”
Prudence remained. She knew that if any Redcoat or British spy crossed the bridge at Pepperell, the minutemen would be trapped. Organizing the women into the first-ever unit of minute women, they marched to the bridge and guarded it throughout the night.
Did these brave women catch their spy? You bet!
According to the afterward, “Today, a granite tablet stands near the bridge, reminding all who pass of Prudence Cummings Wright and the minute women of Pepperell.”
Also included is a note on doing research, illustrator’s note, a bibliography of primary and secondary sources, websites and source notes. I do wish the author had mentioned the location of the bridge.
An important addition to American History, this inspiring informational picture book is a riveting read and should find a home on all library shelves.