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Little Rock Girl 1957: How a Photograph Changed the Fight for Integration (Captured History)

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  237 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
Nine African American students made history when they defied a governor and integrated an Arkansas high school in 1957. It was the photo of one of the nine trying to enter the school a young girl being taunted, harassed and threatened by an angry mob that grabbed the worlds attention and kept its disapproving gaze on Little Rock, Arkansas. In defiance of a federal court ...more
Paperback, 64 pages
Published August 1st 2011 by Compass Point Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Aug 11, 2012 Sps rated it liked it
Well done and poignant, but perhaps not outstanding. You meet the two main subjects of the photo and the photographer, and get a nuanced and lively context for their ongoing lives as well as Little Rock, segregation, the Civil Rights movement. Its facts are careful and its text smooth and accessible.

While I think the emphasis on the visual record is used effectively in the book and will capture young readers' attention, the book doesn't fulfill the promise of its title. I wonder if some squeezi
Brittany Becker
Apr 24, 2016 Brittany Becker rated it it was amazing
"Little Rock Girl" tells the story of the nine African-Americans, known as the "Little Rock Nine," who attended an all white high school. Elizabeth Eckford is the most known Little Rock Nine. She showed up at the school alone, while the other eight students came together. She didn't get the message that they were all going to meet beforehand and walk to school together. Elizabeth had to face the protesters alone at Little Rock Central High School. When she first arrived at school, the gu
Jan 04, 2013 Alicia rated it it was amazing
A brief but specific look at the photo that was seen around the world in 1957. Elizabeth Eckford hadn't gotten the message that everyone was meeting at someone's house on their first day of integrating Little Rock Central High School, so she calmly walked to the bus stop behind tinted sunglasses and a crisp white dress to wait while hecklers walked behind her shouting. This picture and it's photographer are discussed about it's ramifications, the civil rights movement, desegregation and ...more
Robert Carraher
Aug 22, 2011 Robert Carraher rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Ages 8-14 and many aduclts
This review is a first for The Dirty Lowdown, which is befitting since the subject of this book was also a first, although infinitely more courageous and important. This book, Little Rock Girl 1957, meant for readers ages eight through about fourteen. That makes this the first “JUVENILE” book we have reviewed here. That said, I know an awful lot of adults that could benefit from a refresher course in American History.

On September 4, 1957, less than two weeks from today, in Little Rock, Arkansas
Sara Berrafato
Nov 15, 2016 Sara Berrafato rated it really liked it
This is my first informational book review. Little Rock Girl 1957: How a Photograph Changed the Fight for Integration by Shelley Tougas is an informational book that describes the events around the Little Rock Nine, a group of teens in 1957 who were the first to integrate in Arkansas public schools. The book uses the famous picture of Elizabeth Eckford and Hazel Bryan to frame the events that occurred and how it influenced the civil rights movement. It is an interesting format in the fact that ...more
Becky Cross
Nov 26, 2016 Becky Cross rated it really liked it
This is the informational text part of the paired text review.

Little Rock Girl 1957 digs into the story behind and beyond the chilling photo by Will Counts that captures a white high school girl, Hazel, yelling at African American high schooler Elizabeth as she tries to start high school at Little Rock Central High School in the fall of 1957. I always enjoy reading the "behind the story" about photos and people and it was interesting to me to read what happened in the years that followed and wh
Imee Ona
Nov 23, 2016 Imee Ona rated it it was amazing
Informational Book

I immediately became completely absorbed by this informational text. This photo lives in infamy depicting the horrors experienced during the Civil Rights era. Will Counts cover photo depicts one of the students who first integrates Central High School in Birmingham, Alabama. The book is full of more photos telling the story of that time period in our history. The story comes full circle as Counts also shows a picture of the now grown women together on the steps of the high scho
Oct 23, 2016 Adrienna rated it really liked it
The photographs were amazing and memorable, and was able to get a grasp of what the nine students in Little Rock had to endure during Civil Rights Movement for Blacks/African Americans. It would be quite difficult to live during a time of racial comments that were harsh and defamatory and still have to pursue your goals under these circumstances.

It was a pleasure to read a copy from our C Library (C Facility) and will share as one of the reads on the TO READ SHELF.

Atty, Thurgood Marshall argued
An Abundance of Books
Featured at An Abundance of Books

I knew that Elizabeth Eckford never got the news that all of the students were to meet at Daisy Bates' house (head of the state's chapter of the NAACP) so that they could all walk to school together. I'm sure we've all seen the photo of the white mob with twisted faces spewing hatred at an African-American student trying to walk to school. However, I didn't know how far that mob had followed the 15-year-old Eckford. They surrounded her at a bus stop and threatene
Nov 11, 2011 Maxine rated it really liked it
On September 4, 1957, nine black students were to meet at the home of Daisy Bates, the local head of the NAACP and then, together with a police escort, they were to head to Little Rock's Central High School in an attempt to integrate the school. Unfortunately,Elizabeth Eckhorn's parents didn't own a phone so she didn't get the message. She arrived first and alone at the school and was immediately surrounded by an angry white mob.

Will Counts, a local photographer, was able to capture this event -
Mar 21, 2014 Michaela rated it really liked it
Elizabeth Eckford was one of the Little Rock Nine. She got spit on and had mean things said to her when she tried to go to school with white kids. This talked about how one girl stood up and was the symbol for hope in integration. The book then goes on to discuss fighting for equality and how it wasn't always the easiest but African Americans kept pushing through. Elizabeth had one picture taken of her, she was walking away while white people were yelling at her and this one picture changed the ...more
Jul 06, 2011 Becky rated it it was amazing
This book was just amazing. The author took a photograph that probably most adults have seen at least once in one of their history textbooks (whether they remember it or not) and really makes both it and the era come alive for readers of all ages.

The photographs are definitely the stars in this book, as they really show readers snapshots of what was happening in the Arkansas of 1957, but the text is just as effective. It tells, simply but with great impact, what was going on in the South at tha
Elizabeth Church
Apr 19, 2015 Elizabeth Church rated it really liked it
One photograph can alter perceptions and allow our eyes to focus on disturbing and important issues. The cover photo of the book, Little Rock Girl 1957, is one of those photos as it exposed the nation to the fight for equal rights thorough one young woman’s struggle for a better education.

Shot by a local newspaper photographer, Will Counts, it became an iconic image of our country’s troubled role in segregation and Civil Rights. The photo captures African American teenager Elizabeth Eckford, one
Isabella S
Aug 31, 2015 Isabella S rated it liked it
The Little Rock girl by Shelley Tougas is about black youth in a newly integrated school in the south, and their struggle with acceptance. Fifteen year old Elizabeth Eckford is tormented by protestors outside her school in Arkansas. Protestors scream at her and call her disgusting names just so she and the other members of the “Little Rock 9” won’t go to school. The “Little Rock Nine” are nine black students that go to an all white high school. The nine are tormented by the protestors. The ...more
Nov 18, 2012 Ashley rated it it was amazing
Grade/Interest Level: 6-8
Lexile Level: 1010L
Genre: Nonfiction, Information Book

Main Characters: Little Rock 9
Setting: Little Rock, Arkansas -1957
POV: Third Person

This book provides the reader with background information on the integration of Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas 1957. The book mostly uses pictures to convey the message of that difficult first day of school for the African American students. This day was especially difficult for Elizabeth Eckfort who did not receive the c
Journalists know the impact photographs can have on public opinion, and that has never been more certain than during the civil rights movement. This book, part of the Captured History series, focuses on the attempt to integrate an Arkansas high school in 1957. Nine African American teens were selected to enter the school against the governor's wishes. The photograph in question features one of the students, Elzabeth Eckford, who tried to enter the building alone due to miscommunication. She is ...more
Feb 27, 2013 Belann rated it liked it
Little Rock Girl 1957: How a Photograph Changed the Fight for Integration, by Shelley Tougas, tells the story of how the photograph of 15-year-old Elizabeth Eckford trying to enter Little Rock Central High School amidst jeers of white students and other white people from the community captured the racially charged moment for all of history. Photographer Will Counts, a local newspaperman, dressed deceptively in a plaid shirt instead of a suit, was able to move in very close to his subjects. He ...more
The text in this non-fiction account of the Little Rock Nine is accessible for upper elementary school students, but I would consider it an "and-up" type of book due to the history, cutural, political and society values present in the topic. It is a larger history of the Civil Rights Movement with its focus on the events in Arkansas. The book also includes an excellent time-line, glossary, and resources (including an Internet resource researched by the staff). The Selected Bibliography alone ...more
Erin S.
Aug 26, 2014 Erin S. rated it really liked it
In Little Rock Girl 1957 by Shelley Tougas, the reader learns that things get better in the end. The narrator takes the reader through a scarily true story about a shy young girl, Elizabeth Eckford, and how she was mobbed during the integration and how the whole moment was captured in one picture. The picture was printed in newspapers around the whole, telling the world about the injustices occurring in Little Rock, Alabama. The photo angered many people and inspired some to take action and ...more
School Library Journal: When Will Counts snapped a photo on September 4, 1957, Elizabeth Eckford reluctantly became the face of the fight for school integration in Little Rock. In it, Eckford is poised and stoic as Hazel Bryan, shouting violently, follows behind her. This book explores the photo in depth, providing the perspectives of the two subjects and the photographer and discussing what the image meant in the struggle for school integration. Tougas works with this premise and provides ...more
Nov 18, 2015 Kathryn rated it liked it
I read this book as part of my informational book club.

Little Rock Girl 1957 by Shelley Tougas is about the backlash after the "Little Rock Nine" attempted to go to an all white school in Arkansas. The book focuses on photographs taken of Elizabeth Eckford, one of the nine black students who was at first turned way from the school by National Guardsmen and an angry white mob.

The book is more of a story of one particular girl involved along with a history of the event and the history behind segre
Interesting story about the Little Rock Nine -- and, specifically, about the power of photography to influence and inform. This is a familiar story to many, and most libraries probably have material about it, but this book takes an interesting slant in explaining how the now-famous photos were taken and the stories behind them. As an Indiana resident, I was pleased to learn that Will Counts, a native of Arkansas, and the photographer responsible for the now well-known photos, went on to join the ...more
Mar 26, 2012 Heidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, read-2012
Shelley Tougas has used a photograph that exemplifies the emotional intensity of the civil rights movement and built a book around it. Will Counts’ photo of Hazel Bryan sneering at 15-year-old Elizabeth Eckford on September 4, 1957 shows both hatred and serenity, although Elizabeth’s dark glasses could be hiding fear. The Little Rock Nine were to have met up at a girl’s home before trying to integrate Little Rock High School on that day but Elizabeth did not get that message so showed up alone. ...more
Caitlin E
Dec 03, 2015 Caitlin E rated it really liked it
This was one of my book club pairings for week 10 informational texts.

Little Rock Girl 1957 is the historical account of the Little Rock Nine that centers on one particular photograph. This book chronicles the climate, the students involved, the photographer, and the aftermath of the photograph.

I enjoyed the perspective presented in this book because it really demonstrated the power of photography in history. Although I was familiar with most of the content, I did find new information included
Nov 29, 2015 Cara rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, week-10
I read this book as the nonfiction book for my Week 10 Informational Book club book. This book was a very powerful book following the story and struggle of school integration in Little Rock and the power of a photograph. The photographs throughout this book were strong and powerful. It is clear how the news reporters and photographers like Will Counts were instrumental in gaining national and global attention on the issues of racism and school segregation. This book gave a lot of details about ...more
Bridgette Hossbach
Book: Little Rock Girl 1957: How a Photograph Changed the Fight for Integration
Author: Shelley Tougas
Pages: 64

Most people have heard about or learned about Little Rock. This book goes into so much more detail about what happened there. It even includes a timeline in the back to help the reader follow the story accurately. Students of "the little rock 9" group were the first African Americans to enroll into Little Rock Central High School. They experienced great racism and violence as mobs and ar
Jun 27, 2012 Samantha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A moving book about an important moment in history. Text does a great job of explaining a difficult bit of history in a voice appropriate for young readers. The author does a great job of presenting the facts and providing boxes of information that go in depth on a person or topic. The photos included in this book are excellent; they are large/clear and are accompanied by captions describing the images. Back matter includes a glossary, further reading, and a select bibliography.

Overall, a great
Destinee Sutton
A solid NF choice about the battle over integrating Little Rock's schools, told with lots of photos and some broader context. Would pair well with Lions of Little Rock.

There are few interesting pieces of follow-up information in this book I'm gonna share:

#1. Apparently, the snarling racist white girl and the stoic, just-trying-to-learn-over-here black girl eventually became friends. The friendship doesn't seem to have lasted, but it's pretty crazy that they were posing for chummy photos as adul
Dec 01, 2015 Susan rated it it was ok
At the center of this nonfiction history book is the photograph of two young woman taken the day the Little Rock Nine attempted to integrate Central High school. The book includes information on the integration efforts in Little Rock in 1957-58, a very brief history of segregation in the South, a brief history of segregated schools, inserts about key players in the drama such as Daisy Bates, Civil Rights leader and Thurgood Marshall, and updates on the students' futures and relationships. ...more
Jan 19, 2013 Dolores rated it really liked it
The story of the Little Rock Nine fascinates me. Here is heroism beyond my imagination. I can't imagine how brave those kids must have been, or how strong their parents. But historically speaking, it doesn't seem to get the attention it deserves. On the 50th anniversary of the integration, there was no media hoopla. This book doesn't add a great deal to what I've read in previous books. It does provide a nice account and some great pictures. We get to see what the Nine did with their lives. We ...more
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I have a few titles: mom, wife, reader, teacher, speaker. Zombie hunter and Jedi Knight are only part-time gigs.

Most importantly, I’m a writer.

I wrote my first book at age seven, and my friend did the illustrations. Mom threw away A Robin Lays an Egg in a cleaning frenzy. My first publishing heartache.

After college, I worked as a journalist. Reporting taught me character, plot, voice, and how to w
More about Shelley Tougas...

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Captured History (8 books)
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  • Birmingham 1963: How a Photograph Rallied Civil Rights Support
  • Breaker Boys: How a Photograph Helped End Child Labor
  • Civil War Witness: Mathew Brady's Photos Reveal the Horrors of War
  • Man on the Moon: How a Photograph Made Anything Seem Possible
  • Migrant Mother: How a Photograph Defined the Great Depression
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