History Made Relevant for Children

by Roger Zotti

T.D. Carter, author of “Abraham Lincoln and the Forest of Little Pigeon Creek” (AmeriTales Entertainment), a terrific children’s book, makes several things perfectly clear: She loves history and one of her goals is, she said, “To connect today’s children with yesterday’s. I felt there were so many valuable lessons kids could learn  if they looked at the childhoods of people like Lincoln, Amelia Earhart, Thomas Edison, and Jackie Robinson.” T.D., Founder and President of AmeriTales Entertainment, said that  her company’s goal “is to be known as the expert on the childhoods of some of America’s greatest leaders.”

Like all good historians who write for children, T.D makes her historical characters believable. She  stressed that she wants children to see “History in a different light,” – as fun, exciting and interesting. Young children, she continued, mistakenly “think of Lincoln as some kind of untouchable. But in truth there are a lot of things about him that kids of today can relate to.”

In her book about Lincoln, T.D. continued, “young readers will learn about his desire to read, and what he went through to get books. In the upcoming book about Amelia Earhart, children will learn that she wanted to catch insects and explore caves, which was not considered proper for a little girl at the turn of the century. In fact, some parents would not let their children play with her. Reading about it will help children  see how famous people solved their problems and might help them become more confident about themselves.”

Most challenging about writing about Lincoln was, T.D. admitted, “Trying not to throw too much at kids about his childhood at one time.”  “Abraham Lincoln and the Forest…” concentrates on nine-year-old Abe’s adventure in an Indiana forest as he sets out to meet Mr. Crawford, who, we read, “had the most famous nose in Indiana,” and who owned “a book about the forest [that young Abe] was itching to read.” T.D’s book tells how the future president overcomes his fear of the forest “critters” and realizes, she writes, “that the forest was the home of the critters. Just as he didn’t want critters in his house, they didn’t want him in theirs. Folks needed to respect the critters’ house when they were in the Forest of Little Pigeon Creek.”

In addition to “Amelia Earhart and the Haunted Winds of Kansas,” scheduled for June release, T.D. has several more projects in the works:  books  about the early years of Thomas Edison, Jackie Robinson,  Sitting Bull, and Christopher Columbus. T.D. stressed these famous individuals are written about “as real life action heroes because they are, after all, people of action. The series format is that of a hero who sets out on a quest to accomplish something. So there’s an adventure involved and the characters go through  a series of discoveries about themselves and the world.”

Randy Jennings did the wonderful illustrations for T.D’s book. Visit him at www.ArtFreeLancer.com. T.D’s website is www.info@ameritales.com.