A Pioneer Sampler

Combining fact and fiction effectively, this appealing book offers a window into the lives of pioneers. Greenwood offers fictional episodes about one family, the Robertsons, but between chapters about their adventures’ there are sections giving background information about the period.

For instance, in one story Meg goes to the general store to buy ribbons but decides to spend her money to help a neighbor who can’t afford the postage due on a letter. The next few pages show what might be found at a village store; explain how to make a balance scale from yogurt containers and a coat hanger; discuss the post office and letter writing during pioneer days (including the information that the U.S. began using postage stamps in 1847); and give a recipe for homemade ink.

Profusely illustrated with attractive pencil drawings, this book will prove a valuable resource for children studying the period.