Crossing Bok Chitto

Tim Tingle

$8.95

Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
Format: Book
Binding: pb
Pages: 40
Released: January 4, 2006
ISBN-13: 9781933693200

There is a river called Bok Chitto that cuts through Mississippi. In the days before the War Between the States, in the days before the Trail of Tears, Bok Chitto was a boundary. On one side of the river lived the Choctaws. On the other side lived the plantation owners and their slaves. If a slave escaped and made his way across Bok Chitto, the slave was free; the slave owner could not follow. That was the law.
Martha Tom, a young Choctaw girl, knows better than to cross the river, but one day—in search of blackberries—she disobeys her mother and finds herself on the other side. Thus begins the story about seven slaves who cross the big river to freedom, led by a Choctaw angel walking on water! Crossing Bok Chitto will be an eye-opener for kids and adults alike. It documents a part of history that is little-known: the relationship between the Choctaws—members of a sovereign nation—and the slaves who lived in Mississippi during that time before the Civil War, before the Choctaws were forced out of Mississippi to Oklahoma on the Trail of Tears.
In an essay at the back of Crossing Bok Chitto, Tim says, "Crossing Bok Chitto is a tribute to the Indians of every nation who aided the runaway people of bondage." He adds, "Crossing Bok Chitto is an Indian book and documented the Indian way, told and told again and then passed on by uncles and grandmothers. In this new format, this book way of telling, Crossing Bok Chitto is for both the Indian and the non-Indian. We Indians need to know and embrace our past. Non-Indians should know the sweet and secret fire, as secret as the stones, that drives the Indian heart and keeps us so determined that our way, a way of respect for others and the land we live on, will prevail."
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