Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop: The Sanitation Strike of 1968
Illustrator: R. Gregory Christie
In February 1968, two African American sanitation workers were killed by unsafe equipment in Memphis, Tennessee. Outraged at the city’s refusal to recognize a labor union that would fight for higher pay and safer working conditions, sanitation workers went on strike. The strike lasted two months, during which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was called to help with the protests. While his presence was greatly inspiring to the community, this unfortunately would be his last stand for justice. He was assassinated in his Memphis hotel the day after delivering his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” sermon in Mason Temple Church. Inspired by the memories of a teacher who participated in the strike as a child, author Alice Faye Duncan reveals the story of the Memphis sanitation strike from the perspective of a young girl with a riveting combination of poetry and prose.
Memphis sanitation strike time line. Museum to visit. Sources. Source notes. Full-color gouache illustrations.
JLG Release: Oct 2018
Awards & Honors
2019 Coretta Scott King Award Honor, Illustration
ALSC Notable Children's Books - 2019
CSMCL Best Books - 2018
Booklist Editors’ Choice: Books for Youth - 2018
Kirkus Best Books, Picture Books - 2018
School Library Journal Best Books - 2018
Nonfiction Detectives Best Nonfiction - 2018
Praise & Reviews
Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:
Kirkus Reviews*, Booklist*, School Library Journal*
School Library Journal
11" x 8 1/2"
Level 4.9; Points: 0.5;
Scholastic Reading Counts
Level 0; Points: 0;
Potentially Sensitive Areas
Racism, Violence, Death
Martin Luther King, Jr (1929–1968), Sanitation strikes, Sanitation workers, Labor rights, Civil rights, Memphis, Tennessee, Social themes, Prejudice and racism, Twentieth-century US history,