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In the early morning of June 1, 1921, a white mob marched across the train tracks in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and into its predominantly Black Greenwood District—a thriving, affluent neighborhood known as America’s Black Wall Street. They brought with them firearms, gasoline, and explosives. In a few short hours, they’d razed thirty-five square blocks to the ground, leaving hundreds dead. The Tulsa Race Massacre is one of the most devastating acts of racial violence in US history. But how did it come to pass? And why are the events unknown to so many of us today?
Award-winning author Brandy Colbert’s, Black Birds in the Sky, is a searing nonfiction account of the Tulsa Race Massacre. It is part of a legacy of white violence that can be traced from our country’s earliest days through Reconstruction, the Civil Rights movement in the mid–twentieth century, and the fight for justice and accountability Black Americans still face today. The Tulsa Race Massacre went largely undocumented and has rarely been taught in schools. The ambitious and intimate, Black Birds in the Sky, seeks to shed long-overdue light on this shameful moment in American history, and by showing us our past, points to a way forward.
About Brandy Colbert:
Brandy Colbert is the critically acclaimed author of several books for children and teens, including The Voting Booth, The Only Black Girls in Town, The Revolution of Birdie Randolph, Stonewall Book Award winner Little & Lion and The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks. Her books have been chosen as Junior Library Guild selections, and have appeared on many best of lists, including the American Library Association's Best Fiction for Young Adults and Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers.
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