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SHE SANG PROMISE by Jan Godown Annino


The Story of Betty Mae Tiger Jumper, Seminole Tribal Leader

by Jan Godown Annino & illustrated by Lisa Desimini

Age Range: 6 - 9

Pub Date: March 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-4263-0592-4
Publisher: National Geographic

Short poetic stanzas join jewel-toned illustrations to sing the satisfying story of Betty Mae Tiger Jumper. Deep in the Everglades in the 1920s, Seminole tribal leaders threatened to throw this young daughter and granddaughter of medicine women into the swamp for the “bad spirits” of her white father. Her family fled to the Dania Reservation, where she grew up and acquired the Mission faith she combined with traditional beliefs. Seeking an education, she left Florida and became a nurse, but she returned to serve her people. She returned truants to school and helped set up a tribal council and a newspaper. Her election to tribal leadership in 1967 was a remarkable achievement in her male-dominated culture, and she continues to sing stories of her people today. The design of this attractive, chronological biography reflects the subject. A column of text on a natural fabric background accompanies each of Desimini’s paintings; their rounded shapes and glowing colors reveal interesting details of Seminole life. A glossary serves as the index to pictures and text. (afterword from her son, map, chronology, further facts, author’s note, bibliography) (Informational picture book. 6-9)