Here is the story of Molly Williams, an African American cook for New York City's Fire Company 11 who is considered to be the first known female firefighter in U.S. history.
New York City’s Fire Company Number 11 is in trouble. A deadly snowstorm is blowing, and many of the volunteers are sick in bed. When the fire alarm sounds, who will answer the call? Who will save the neighborhood? Molly Williams, the company’s cook, for one! Clapping a weathered leather helmet on her head, strapping spatterdashes over her woolen leggings, and pulling on heavy work gloves —it’s Molly, by golly, to the rescue. Young readers will enjoy plucky Molly Williams’s legendary adventure as they learn how fires were fought in the early 1800s.
About the Author
Dianne Ochiltree is the author of several award-winning picture books for the very young, including Ten Monkey Jamboree, Sixteen Runaway Pumpkins (Margaret K. McElderry Books) and Lull-a-bye, Little One (G.P. Putnam's Sons). Dianne lives in Sarasota, Florida, with her family and pets in a house by the bay. You can visit her at ochiltreebooks.com.
Kathleen Kemly's research for Molly, By Golly included a trip to the New York City Fire Museum. While in New York she was able to imagine Molly's life there and what the city was like many years ago. Kathleen illustrated You Can't Do That, Amelia! for Calkins Creek and A Fishing Surprise for Cooper Square Publishing, among others. Kathleen lives in Seattle and can be reached at kathleenkemly.com.
"Kemly's snow-streaked illustrations show Molly as a woman of determination and strength, and a sense of both danger and heroism radiates from the story." —Publishers Weekly
"Ochiltree and Kemly tell Molly Williams' story in lively prose and richly modeled watercolors... All the pages are double-spread, full-bleed images, showing much period detail along with the flames and falling snow and Molly's signature bright blue calico dress and checkered apron. Faces are broad and full of emotion, with Molly's strong brown face showing every nuance of determination and courage....A pleasing historical tidbit." —Kirkus Reviews