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A Take-Charge Girl

Blazes a Trial to Congress

The Story of Jeannette Rankin



Calkins Creek

(Astra Books)

(pub.2.7.2023) 40 pages

ages 7-10

Author: Gretchen Woelfle

Illustrator: Rebecca Gibbon

Character: Jeannette Rankin


" Jeannette Rankin was always a take-charge girl. Whether taking care of horses or her little brothers and sisters—Jeannette knew what to do and got the job done. That’s why, when she saw poor children living in bad conditions in San Francisco, she knew she had to take charge and change things.

But in the early twentieth century, women like Jeannette couldn’t vote to change the laws that failed to protect children. Jeannette became an activist and led the charge, campaigning for women’s right to vote. And when her home state, Montana, gave women that right, Jeannette ran for Congress and became America’s first congressWOMAN!"

Tantalizing taste:

" When she finally spoke, she lambasted congressmen who had voted to spend $300,000 to study food for hogs, and only $30,000 to study the needs of children.

She said, 'if the hogs of the nation are ten times more important than the children, it is high time that women should make their influence felt.'"

And something more: In the Acknowledgments, author Gretchen Woelfle writes "...My esteemed writers' group - Alexis O'Neill, Caroline Arnold, Ann Stampler, and Sherrill Kushner - having read multiple drafts of this book, know (and love) Jeannette nearly as well as I do ... [and] I've been a fan of Rebecca Gibbon's art for many years now, and am honored to share Jeannette's story with her."


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