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THE WORKERS' DETECTIVE by Stephanie Sammartino McPherson


A Story about Dr. Alice Hamilton

by Stephanie Sammartino McPherson & illustrated by Janet Schulz

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: July 24th, 1992
ISBN: 0-87614-699-X
Publisher: Carolrhoda

 In the ``Creative Minds'' series, an easily read biography of a physician (1869-1970) who pioneered in recognizing and documenting industrial hazards, was instrumental in the passage of the first state and federal laws protecting workers, and was the ``first female faculty member'' at Harvard. Interesting in itself, Hamilton's career also illuminates the disregard for workers' health she helped alleviate; but this account is so simplistic one is left with the impression that industrialists were always happy to change their practices as soon as scientific evidence indicated that they were deleterious. The writer often fails to enrich her narrative with specifics--e.g., she doesn't identify Alice's sister Edith except as a ``famous writer,'' or mention the notable accomplishments of the rest of her family; if she had a personal life, there's no mention of it. Schulz's b&w illustrations are, at best, serviceable; a chronology would be useful; an index is needed. Still, in the absence of other books about Hamilton for children, acceptable and even useful. Bibliography. (Biography. 8-12)