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Authors: Joyce Hansen

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Miss Fortune moved to the cabin that was built next to the school especially for the teacher. We call it the teacher's house. The men and women take turns keeping guard, though, to make certain that the
buckra don't come and burn down our school as they try to do last week. Miss Fortune smelled the smoke and saw the men who set the fire riding away. She say it look like they was wearing some kind of hood. Thank God we put the fire out before it made much damage. And to think we told her to come and live among us because we thought she would be safer with us than in the cottage near the big house!

Some bad news. Miriam and several other children died from a terrible fever. Brother Thomas still cannot talk and cannot walk by himself. But we pray that one day he'll be better.

Now for me and my life. I have decided, first, not to marry Julius but to go back to the old Rebel camp and find Mariah and Gabriel. Remember I tell you about them? If Obi is searching for me, he'll go to them because that's where he last left me. I went to the Freedmen's Bureau even though I said I wasn't going again, and I was told that they have a list from a colored regiment. They will write to me when they get more information.

Jason joined a medicine show. I got a letter from him and he says he is happy and fine. I miss him so much.

Now for the big news and decision: I want to go to the school in Philadelphia. We don't have enough schools or teachers to go around. Our small schoolhouse is full to overflowing, with some of the children coming from the Riverview plantation. Rose and Miss Fortune helped me to make up my mind to go to Philadelphia. Also, Miss Fortune said that I could live with her family while I attended the school. That made me feel less afraid about going. I have a welcome letter from her family already saying that I do not have to worry about my room or board.

So, my dear Miss Grantley, I hope you are as happy
and excited about my decision as I am. I hope it's not too late for me to attend the school. I saved a little bit of money, and Rose and a few of the other people want to help pay some of the costs too. I look forward to hearing from you soon. I am, as always,

Your Friend and Student,


March 1866
The tall young man gazed at the still waters gleaming in the sun. He'd found a quiet spot on the deck of the ship, away from the other soldiers. He removed his army jacket and pulled his cap over his deep-set eyes to shade them from the sun's glare.

He was glad to be coming home to South Carolina. A lone sea gull flew overhead, a sign that they would soon be nearing land. He closed his eyes and saw her little brown, heart-shaped face and her lively eyes. He wondered how much she'd changed these past few years and how long it would take to find her.

First he'd go to the Freedmen's Bureau in Charleston, and then to the old Confederate camp, where he had left her with Mariah and Gabriel. She may even have gone back to the Jennings farm, their former home. He would find her, though. No matter how long it took, he would find her.

Stories of Adventure From
Bestselling Author of

                71024-2/$3.50 US/$4.25 Can Ben O'Neal searched the darkened shore for survivors from the ship wrecked by the angry surf. He spotted the body on the sand—a girl of about ten or eleven; almost his own age—half drowned, more dead than alive. The tiny stranger he named Teetoncey would change everything about the way Ben felt about himself.

                71025-0/$3.50 US/$4.25 Can Teetoncey, the little girl Ben O'Neal rescued from the sea after the shipwreck of the
Malta Empress,
had not spoken a word in the month she had lived with Ben and his mother. But then the silence ends and Teetoncey reveals a secret about herself and the
Malta Empress
that will change all their lives forever.

                71026-9/$3.50 US/$4.25 Can At thirteen, Ben O'Neal is about to begin his lifelong dream—to go to sea. But before Ben sails, he receives an urgent message from Teetoncey, saying she's in trouble. And somehow Ben knows that means trouble for him.

Celebrating 40 Years of Cleary Kids

Author's Note

The people and events in
Out From This Place
are fictional but are based on incidents that occurred during the end of the Civil War, the turbulent period that witnessed the beginnings of a new people, not quite African after the two-hundred-year sojourn in the New World, not yet Americans. Only after the passage of the Thirteenth and Fourteenth amendments to the Constitution were people of African descent accorded citizenship under the law.

In 1861, when the Union army gained control of the Sea Islands off the coast of South Carolina, most of the planters fled to the mainland. Blacks became contraband, passing along with other confiscated Confederate property into the hands of the army. They continued to labor on the abandoned plantations working, for wages, for the federal government.

In January of 1865, General William T. Sherman ordered that the newly freed men and women should be settled on tracts of land on the islands off the Carolina coast extending to the “country bordering the St. Johns River, Florida.” Forty thousand people were relocated in this region and were given temporary title to the abandoned lands formerly held by the Confederates. No more than forty acres of land were to be given to a family.

In May of the same year, President Andrew Johnson changed this policy, and the land was returned to the former owners. Some blacks, refusing to give back their acreage, armed themselves and fought to keep the land until they were forcibly removed by the army.

There were cases, especially in South Carolina, where
freedmen were able to purchase land, when someone was willing to sell to them or when the South Carolina Land Commission made plots available for sale, and form their own communities. New Canaan, in
Out From This Place,
is based on an all-black community in South Carolina, developed after the Civil War.

Other Avon Camelot Books by
Joyce Hansen

Which Way Freedom?

Joyce Hansen teaches special education and enjoys photography when she isn't writing for young people. Winner of the Spirit of Detroit Award, the author's other titles include
The Gift Giver, Home Boy,
Which Way Freedom?
Ms. Hansen lives with her husband in New York City.

Avon Books are available at special quantity discounts for bulk purchases for sales promotions, premiums, fund raising or educational use. Special books, or book excerpts, can also be created to fit specific needs.

For details write or telephone the office of the Director of Special Markets, Avon Books, Dept. FP, 1350 Avenue of the Americas, New York, New York 10019, 1-800-238-0658.

If you purchased this book without a cover, you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as “unsold and destroyed” to the publisher, and neither the author nor the publisher has received any payment for this “stripped book.”


Copyright © 1988 by Joyce Hansen

All rights reserved.
You may not copy, distribute, transmit, reproduce, or otherwise make available this publication (or any part of it) in any form, or by any means (including without limitation electronic, digital, optical, mechanical, photocopying, printing, recording, or otherwise), without the prior written permission of the publisher. Any person who does any unauthorized act in relation to this publication may be liable to criminal prosecution and civil claims for damages.

First published in the United States of America in 1998
by Walker Publishing Company, Inc., a division of Bloomsbury Publishing, Inc.
E-book edition published in February 2013

For information about permission to reproduce selections from his book, write to
Permissions, Walker BFYR, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York 10010

Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 88-5594
RL: 5.1

ISBN 978-0-8027-3552-2 (e-book)

BOOK: Out From This Place
3.04Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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