KPL Entrance

Historical Fiction: United States - 1800s

Alcott, Louisa May. Little women
The sentimental and humorous adventures of the four March sisters as they grew up in the nineteenth century.

Aldrich, Thomas Bailey. The story of a bad boy
The boyhood adventures of a mischievous lad in nineteenth-century New England are based on the author's own experiences.

Armstrong, Jennifer. Black-eyed Susan
Ten-year-old Susie and her father love living on the South Dakota prairie with its vast, uninterrupted views of land and sky, but Susie's mother greatly misses their old life in Ohio.

Armstrong, Jennifer. Steal away
In 1855 two thirteen-year-old girls, one white and one black, run away from a southern farm and make the difficult journey north to freedom, living to recount their story forty-one years later to two similar young girls.

Arrington, Frances. Bluestem
With their father away and their mother traumatized by some unknown event, eleven-year-old Polly and her younger sister are left to take care of themselves and their prairie homestead.

Avi. The barn
In an effort to fulfill their dying father's last request, nine-year-old Ben and his brother and sister construct a barn on their land in the Oregon Territory.

Avi. Beyond the western sea. Book one: The escape from home
Driven from their impoverished Irish village, fifteen-year-old Maura and her younger brother meet their landlord's runaway son in Liverpool while all three wait for a ship to America; their lives continue to intertwine on board ship and in the New World.

Avi. The true confessions of Charlotte Doyle
As the lone "young lady" on a transatlantic voyage in 1832, Charlotte learns that the captain is murderous and the crew rebellious.

Bartoletti, Susan Campbell. A coal miner's bride: the diary of Anetka Kaminska
A diary account of thirteen-year-old Anetka's life in Poland in 1896, immigration to America, marriage to a coal miner, widowhood, and happiness in finally finding her true love.

Beatty, Jerome. Blockade!
Recounts the blockade of a North Carolina port by the Union gunboat, Louisiana, based on the diary of teenage participant, Stephen F. Blanding.

Beatty, Patricia. By crumbs, it's mine!
While stranded in the Arizona territory in the 1880's a thirteen-year-old girl finds herself the owner of a traveling hotel.

Beatty, Patricia. Charley Skedaddle
During the Civil War, a twelve-year-old Bowery Boy from New York City joins the Union Army as a drummer, deserts during a battle in Virginia, and encounters a hostile old mountain woman.

Blakeslee, Ann R. A different kind of hero
In 1881 twelve-year-old Renny, who resists his father's efforts to turn him into a rough, tough, brawling boy, earns the disapproval of the entire mining camp when he befriends a newly arrived Chinese boy.

Blos, Joan W. A gathering of days
The journal of a fourteen-year-old girl kept the last year she lived on the family farm; records daily events in her small New Hampshire town, her father's remarriage, and the death of her best friend.

Brill, Marlene Targ. Diary of a drummer boy 

The fictionalized diary of a twelve-year-old boy who joins the Union army as a drummer and ends up fighting in the Civil War.

Byars, Betsy Cromer. Trouble River
When he builds his raft, a twelve-year-old boy never dreams that it will serve as the sole means of escape for him and his grandmother when hostile Indians threaten their prairie cabin.

Cannon, A. E. Charlotte's Rose
As a twelve-year-old Welsh immigrant carries a motherless baby along the Mormon Trail in 1856, she comes to love the baby as her own and fear the day the baby's father will reclaim her.

Carbone, Elisa Lynn. Stealing freedom
A novel based on the events in the life of a young slave girl from Maryland who endures all kinds of mistreatment and cruelty, including being separated from her family, but who eventually escapes to freedom in Canada.

Chambers, Veronica. Amistad rising: a story of freedom
A fictional account of the 1839 revolt of Africans aboard the slave ship Amistad and the subsequent legal case argued before the Supreme Court in 1841 by former president John Quincy Adams.

Clements, Bruce. I tell a lie every so often
In 1848 a fourteen-year-old Missourian, although not a habitual liar, tells two lies that start off an unusual chain of events.

Collier, James Lincoln. The clock
In 1810 in Connecticut, trapped in a gruelling job in the local textile mill to help pay her father's debts, fifteen-year-old Annie becomes the victim of the cruel overseer and plots revenge against him.

Collier, James Lincoln. With every drop of blood
While trying to transport food to Richmond, Virginia, during the Civil War, fourteen-year-old Johnny is captured by a black Union soldier.

Conlon-McKenna, Marita. Wildflower girl
In the mid-nineteenth century, thirteen-year-old Peggy O'Driscoll sets out alone from Ireland for America, hoping to make a better life for herself.

Crane, Stephen. The red badge of courage
Henry Fleming's fear of what will happen during battles in the Civil War are exacerbated by the action he and the men around him witness.

Crofford, Emily. Born in the year of courage
In 1841, having been shipwrecked and picked up by an American whaling ship outside Japanese territorial waters, fifteen-year-old Manjiro decides to go live in America and work towards opening trade between his country and the West.

Cross, Gillian. Great elephant chase
In 1881, fifteen-year-old Tad, an orphan, helps a girl attempting to get a mighty Indian elephant to friends in Nebraska, all the while pursued by two unscrupulous villains who claim that the elephant is theirs.

Cullen, Lynn. Nelly in the wilderness
In the Indiana wilderness in 1821, twelve-year-old Nelly Vandorn and her older brother hold fast to their rough frontier ways when their father brings home a fancy new city wife not long after burying their mother.

Cushman, Karen. The ballad of Lucy Whipple
In 1849, twelve-year-old California Morning Whipple, who renames herself Lucy, is distraught when her mother moves the family from Massachusetts to a rough California mining town.

Cushman, Karen. Rodzina
A twelve-year-old Polish American girl is boarded onto an orphan train in Chicago with fears about traveling to the West and a life of unpaid slavery.

Dahlberg, Maurine F. The spirit and Gilly Bucket
In 1859, when Gilly's father goes to search for gold in the Rocky Mountains, the eleven-year-old is sent to stay with her aunt and uncle in Virginia, where she befriends one of her uncle's slave girls, finds out about the Underground Railroad, and discovers that people are not always exactly as they seem.

DeFelice, Cynthia C. The apprenticeship of Lucas Whitaker
After his family dies of consumption in 1849, twelve-year-old Lucas becomes a doctor's apprentice.

DeFelice, Cynthia C. Weasel
Alone in the frontier wilderness in the winter of 1839 while his father is recovering from an injury, eleven-year-old Nathan runs afoul of the renegade killer known as Weasel and makes a surprising discovery about the concept of revenge.

Demas, Corinne. If ever I return again
In 1856, twelve-year-old Celia Snow sets sail with her parents on her father's whaling ship and chronicles her subsequent adventures on the more than two-year voyage in a series of letters written to her cousin Abigail.

Donahue, John. An island far from home
The twelve-year-old son of a Union army doctor killed during the fighting in Fredericksburg comes to understand the meaning of war and the fine line between friends and enemies when he begins corresponding with a young Confederate prisoner of war.

Erdrich, Louise. The birchbark house
Omakayas, a seven-year-old Native American girl of the Ojibwa tribe, lives through the joys of summer and the perils of winter on an island in Lake Superior in 1847.

Fleischman, Paul. Bull Run
Northerners, Southerners, generals, couriers, dreaming boys, and worried sisters describe the glory, the horror, the thrill, and the disillusionment of the first battle of the Civil War.

Fleischman, Sid. Mr. Mysterious & Company
The adventures of a family of magicians traveling across the western deserts and plains in the 1880s.

Fritz, Jean. Brady
A young Pennsylvania boy takes part in the pre-Civil War anti-slavery activities.
Gauch, Patricia Lee. Thunder at Gettysburg
Fourteen-year-old Tillie becomes involved in the tragic battle of July 1-3, 1863.

Gregory, Kristiana. Across the wide and lonesome prairie: the Oregon Trail diary of Hattie Campbell, Booneville, Missoura, 1847
In her diary, thirteen-year-old Hattie chronicles her family's arduous 1847 journey from Missouri to Oregon on the Oregon Trail.

Guccione, Leslie D. Come morning
Twelve-year-old Freedom, the son of a freed slave living in Delaware in the early 1850s, takes over his father's work in the Underground Railroad when his father disappears.

Hahn, Mary Downing. The Gentleman Outlaw and me--Eli: a story of the Old West
In 1887 twelve-year-old Eliza, disguised as a boy and traveling towards Colorado in search of her missing father, falls in with a Gentleman Outlaw and joins him in his illegal schemes.

Hahn, Mary Downing. Promises to the dead
Twelve-year-old Jesse leaves his home on Maryland's Eastern Shore to help a young runaway slave find a safe haven in the early days of the Civil War.

Hansen, Joyce. Out from this place
A fourteen-year-old black girl tries to find a fellow ex-slave, who had joined the Union army during the Civil War, during the confusing times after the emancipation of the slaves.

Hansen, Joyce. Which way freedom?
Obi escapes from slavery during the Civil War, joins a black Union regiment, and soon becomes involved in the bloody fighting at Fort Pillow, Tennessee.

Harness, Cheryl. Ghosts of the Civil War
The ghost of Willie, President Abraham Lincoln's older son, transports Lindsey back to his own time, where she sees and hears many things from both sides of the Civil War. Includes passages from contemporary documents, a glossary, biographical sketches, and a bibliography.

Henry, Marguerite. San Domingo: The medicine hat stallion
In pre-Civil War Wyoming, a teenager's life is complicated when his strangely hostile father trades the boy's beloved horse to the pony express.

Henty, G. A. With Lee in Virginia: a story of the American Civil War
Presents, chronologically, some of the great battles during the Northern invasion of Virginia during the Civil War.

Holm, Jennifer L. Our only May Amelia
As the only girl in a Finnish American family of seven brothers, May Amelia Jackson resents being expected to act like a lady while growing up in Washington state in 1899.

Hunt, Irene. Across five Aprils
Young Jethro Creighton grows from a boy to a man when he is left to take care of the family farm in Illinois during the difficult years of the Civil War.

Johnston, Norma. Over Jordan
In 1836, fourteen-year-old Roxana undertakes a dangerous journey up the Ohio River to help her beloved servant, Jess, and Jess' fiance, a runaway slave, escape to freedom, aided by Roxana's former teacher Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Jones, Elizabeth McDavid. Watcher in the piney woods
In 1865, while helping her family keep their Virginia farm going through the end of the Civil War, twelve-year-old Cassie meets a Confederate deserter and a Yankee prisoner of war and tries to discover who has been stealing from the farm.

Karr, Kathleen. The great turkey walk
In 1860, a somewhat simple-minded fifteen-year-old boy attempts to herd one thousand turkeys from Missouri to Denver, Colorado, in hopes of selling them at a profit.

Keehn, Sally M. Anna Sunday
In 1863 twelve-year-old Anna, disguised as a boy and accompanied by her younger brother Jed, leaves their Pennsylvania home and makes the difficult journey to join their wounded father in Winchester, Virginia, where they find themselves in danger from Confederate troops.

Keith, Harold. Rifles for Watie
A sweeping novel of the Civil War, this book follows the adventures of a young man determined to join the Union army who somehow befriends the rebels and ends up with friends on both sides of the conflict.

Lampman, Evelyn Sibley. Half-breed
A Crow Indian youth returns to his white father's people and to a life in which patience and maturity are the only means to understanding and accepting an unheroic father.

Lasky, Kathryn. Beyond the divide
In 1849, a fourteen-year-old Amish girl defies convention by leaving her secure home in Pennsylvania to accompany her father across the continent by wagon train.

Lasky, Kathryn. True north
Because of the strong influence which her grandfather, an abolitionist, has in her life, fourteen-year-old Lucy assists a fugitive slave girl in her escape.

Laurgaard, Rachel K. Patty Reed's doll: the story of the Donner party
A wooden doll recalls the hope with which a group of pioneers begins their journey and the ordeals they face as they travel from Springfield, Illinois, to California.

Lawlor, Laurie. Addie across the prairie
Sequel: Addie's long summer
Unhappy to leave her home and friends, Addie reluctantly accompanies her family to the Dakota Territory and slowly begins to adjust to life on the prairie.

Levin, Betty. Brother moose
In the late 1800s, two orphan girls, aided by an Indian and his grandson, make a perilous trip to Maine to find a family.

Levoy, Myron. The magic hat of Mortimer Wintergreen
In 1893, thirteen-year-old Joshua and his eleven-year-old sister, Amy, travel from South Dakota to New York City with the help of the mysterious Mortimer Wintergreen and his unpredictable magic hat.

Lord, Athena V. A spirit to ride the whirlwind
Twelve-year-old Binnie, whose mother runs a company boarding house in Lowell, Massachusetts, begins working in a textile mill and is caught up in the 1836 strike of women workers.

MacBride, Roger Lea. Bachelor girl
Having left her parents' Missouri farm for good and trained to become a telegraph operator in Kansas City, teenage Rose moves out to San Francisco and joins the thousands of "bachelor girls" supporting themselves.

Mazer, Harry. My Brother Abe
Forced off their land in Kentucky in 1816, nine-year-old Sarah Lincoln, known as Sally, and her family, including younger brother Abe, move to the Indiana frontier.

McDonald, Brix. Riding on the wind
A tale of Pony Express riders and their lives.

McGill, Alice. Miles' song
In 1851 in South Carolina, Miles, a twelve-year-old slave, is sent to a "breaking ground" to have his spirit broken but endures the experience by secretly taking reading lessons from another slave.

McGraw, Eloise Jarvis. Moccasin trail
A pioneer boy, brought up by Crow Indians, is reunited with his family and attempts to orient himself in the white man's culture.

McKissack, Pat. Run away home
In 1886 in Alabama, an eleven-year-old African American girl and her family befriend and give refuge to a runaway Apache boy.

Minahan, John A. Abigail's drum
During the War of 1812, when British soldiers threaten the town of Scituate, Massachusetts, young Rebecca Bates and her sister Abigail, daughters of the local lighthouse keeper, find a way to save both him and the town.

Moeri, Louise. Save Queen of Sheba
After miraculously surviving a Sioux Indian raid on the trail to Oregon, a brother and sister set out with few provisions to find the rest of the settlers.

Nixon, Joan Lowery. Aggie's home
A clumsy and unattractive twelve-year-old, Aggie is sure no one will want to adopt her when she rides the orphan train out west, but when she meets the eccentric Bradon family she begins to have some hope. Includes historical information about orphan trains and the woman's suffrage movement.

Nixon, Joan Lowery. A family apart
When their mother can no longer support them, six siblings are sent by the Children's Aid Society of New York City to live with farm families in Missouri in 1860.

O'Dell, Scott. Sing down the moon
A young Navajo girl recounts the events of 1864 when her tribe was forced to march to Fort Sumner as prisoners of the white soldiers.

O'Dell, Scott. Streams to the river, river to the sea: a novel of Sacagawea
A young Indian woman, accompanied by her infant and cruel husband, experiences joy and heartbreak when she joins the Lewis and Clark Expedition seeking a way to the Pacific.

O'Dell, Scott. Thunder rolling in the mountains
In the late nineteenth century, a young Nez Perce girl relates how her people were driven off their land by the U.S. Army and forced to retreat north until their eventual surrender.

Paterson, Katherine. Jip: his story
While living on a Vermont poor farm during 1855 and 1856, Jip learns his identity and that of his mother and comes to understand how he arrived at this place.

Paterson, Katherine. Lyddie
Impoverished Vermont farm girl Lyddie Worthen is determined to gain her independence by becoming a factory worker in Lowell, Massachusetts, in the 1840s.

Paterson, Katherine. Preacher's boy
In 1899, ten-year-old Robbie, son of a preacher in a small Vermont town, gets himself into all kinds of trouble when he decides to give up being Christian in order to make the most of his life before the end of the world.

Paulsen, Gary. Mr. Tucket
(Series includes several other titles)
In 1848, while on a wagon train headed for Oregon, fourteen-year-old Francis Tucket is kidnapped by Pawnee Indians and then falls in with a one-armed trapper who teaches him how to live in the wild.

Paulsen, Gary. Sarny, a life remembered
Sequel to: Nightjohn
Continues the adventures of Sarny, the slave girl Nightjohn taught to read, through the aftermath of the Civil War during which time she taught other Blacks and lived a full life until age ninety-four.

Pearsall, Shelley. Trouble don't last
Samuel, an eleven-year-old Kentucky slave, and Harrison, the elderly slave who helped raise him, attempt to escape to Canada via the Underground Railroad.

Peck, Richard. Fair weather
In 1893, thirteen-year-old Rosie and members of her family travel from their Illinois farm to Chicago to visit Aunt Euterpe and attend the World's Columbian Exposition which, along with an encounter with Buffalo Bill and Lillian Russell, turns out to be a life-changing experience for everyone.

Pfitsch, Patricia Curtis. Keeper of the light
After her father's death in 1872, Faith takes over his job as lighthouse keeper on Lake Superior, until her mother decides to move into town, where Faith finds herself stifled by the role society expects her to play.

Pfitsch, Patricia Curtis. Riding the flume
In 1894, fifteen-year-old Francie determines to fight the lumbermen and protect the largest Sequoia tree ever seen, which had been given to her sister just before her death six years earlier.

Pinkney, Andrea Davis. Abraham Lincoln : letters from a slave girl
A fictional correspondence between President Abraham Lincoln and a twelve-year-old slave girl that discusses his decision to write the Emancipation Proclamation.

Pryor, Bonnie. Joseph: a rumble of war, 1861
After his stepfather becomes an abolitionist, ten-year-old Joseph struggles with his own thoughts about slavery as he sees its divisive power in his small Kentucky town.

Reeder, Carolyn. Captain Kate
Determined to take her father's coal-carrying barge on the C&O Canal from Cumberland, Maryland, to Georgetown in D.C., twelve-year-old Kate learns hurtful truths about herself.

Richter, Conrad. The light in the forest
True Son became an Indian when he was captured at four from the field of his parents' Pennsylvania frontier farm. When he is forced to return to his parents, he is torn by the conflict between the free Indian life and the restrictions of the settlers.

Rinaldi, Ann. Amelia's war
When a Confederate general threatens to burn Hagerstown, Maryland, unless it pays an exorbitant ransom, twelve-year-old Amelia and her friend find a way to save the town.

Rinaldi, Ann. In my father's house
For two sisters growing up surrounded by the Civil War, there is conflict both outside and inside their house.

Robinet, Harriette. Forty acres and maybe a mule
Born with a withered leg and hand, Pascal, who is about twelve years old, joins other former slaves in a search for a farm and the freedom which it promises.

Robinet, Harriette. Missing from Haymarket Square
Three children in Chicago in 1886 experience the Haymarket Riot in response to exploitative working conditions.

Roop, Peter. Girl of the shining mountains: Sacagawea's story
Sacagawea describes how, at the age of sixteen, she becomes part of the Lewis and Clark Expedition and serves as their interpreter and guide, surviving many dangerous adventures on their trek through the wilderness.

Ryan, Pam Munoz. Riding freedom
A fictionalized account of Charley (Charlotte) Parkhurst who ran away from an orphanage, posed as a boy, moved to California, and fooled everyone by her appearance.

Sandoz, Mari. The horsecatcher
Unable to kill, a young Cheyenne is scorned by his tribe when he chooses to become a horse catcher rather than a warrior.

Schultz, Jan Neubert. Firestorm
Maggie hates moving from beautiful Superior, Wisconsin, to dusty Hinckley, Minnesota, in 1894, until she almost loses her family to a forest fire that sweeps through the town.

Steele, William O. The perilous road
Chris hates the Yankees who robbed him but when he reports the presence of a Yankee patrol to the Confederates, he realizes too late he may have betrayed his own brother.

Stevens, Carla. Anna, Grandpa, and the big storm
Anna's grandfather is bored with city life until he and Anna are stranded on the Third Avenue El during the blizzard of 1888.

Stolz, Mary. Cezanne Pinto
In his old age Cezanne Pinto recalls his youth as a slave on a Virginia plantation and his escape to a new life in the North.

Taylor, Theodore. Teetoncey
Sequels: Teetoncey and Ben O'Neal and The odyssey of Ben O'Neal
In this first novel of a trilogy, eleven-year-old Ben rescues an English girl from a shipwreck off the Outer Banks of North Carolina; and, though she becomes part of his family, she never speaks.

Van Leeuwen, Jean. Bound for Oregon
A fictionalized account of the journey made by nine-year-old Mary Ellen Todd and her family from their home in Arkansas westward over the Oregon Trail in 1852.

Wait, Lea. Stopping to home
In 1806, orphaned eleven-year-old Abigail and her little brother Seth find a home with the young Widow Chase in the seaport of Wiscasset, Maine, and help her discover a way to support them all.

Warner, Sally. Finding Hattie
In 1882 Hattie, a fourteen-year-old orphan, joins her cousin Sophie in attending boarding school at Miss Bulkley's Seminary for Young Ladies in Tarrytown, New York, and tries to find her place in the world.

Whelan, Gloria. Fruitlands
Fictional diary entries recount the true-life efforts of Louisa May Alcott's family to establish a utopian community known as Fruitlands in Massachusetts in 1843.

Wilkins, Celia. Across the rolling river
Follows the experiences of Caroline Quiner, who will become Laura Ingalls Wilder's mother, and her family on their farm on the Wisconsin frontier during the year in which Caroline turns twelve.

Wisler, G. Clifton. The drummer boy of Vicksburg
In this fact-based story, fourteen-year-old drummer boy Orion Howe displays great bravery during a Civil War battle at Vicksburg, Mississippi.

Yates, Elizabeth. Patterns on the wall
Adventures of a man who travels through New England, painting and decorating homes.

Yates, Elizabeth. Prudence Crandall: woman of courage
A new edition of the historical novel of the Quaker teacher who in 1833 opened a school for African-American women and girls.

Yep, Laurence. Dragon's gate
Sequel to: Mountain light
When he accidentally kills a Manchu, a fifteen-year-old Chinese boy is sent to America to join his father, an uncle, and other Chinese working to build a tunnel for the transcontinental railroad through the Sierra Nevada mountains in 1867.