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The Story of an American Patriot

by Jan Cheripko & illustrated by Gary Lippincott

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2004
ISBN: 1-59078-065-5
Publisher: Boyds Mills

Rodney of the Delaware Colony traveled from his home to Philadelphia, a distance of 80 miles, in the stormy July weather of 1776. It was a race so that he might arrive to vote for the Declaration. The Delaware delegates were tied, one for, one against. Members of the convention knew that the letter to King George III and to the colonists must show that all the colonies supported it or it would not demonstrate their strong determination. Cheripko, aided by Lippincott’s dramatic watercolors, provides some background on Rodney and on the situations leading to the Declaration. The ride is tense throughout, with the fate of the future nation hanging on his vote. The description of his facial cancer—voting yes meant he couldn’t go to England for help—adds a dimension to the man and his ride. The story concentrates on his trip, but manages to convey the drama of this pivotal moment in American history. Fascinating. (sources, suggested readings, index) (Nonfiction. 4-6)