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Across America on an Emigrant Train Reprint Edition
Contributor(s): Murphy, Jim
ISBN: 0395764831     ISBN-13: 9780395764831
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
    OUR PRICE: $13.14  
Product Type: Paperback - Other Formats
Published: May 2003
Annotation: An account of Robert Louis Stevenson's twelve day journey from New York to California in 1879, interwoven with a history of the building of the transcontinental railroad and the settling of the West.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Railroad travel; United States; History; 19th century; Juvenile literature.
Authors, Scottish; 19th century; Biography; Juvenile literature.
Railroads; History.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Nonfiction | Transportation | Railroads & Trains
- Juvenile Nonfiction | Biography & Autobiography | Literary
- Juvenile Nonfiction | History | United States
Dewey: 828.803
LCCN: bl2006019366
Lexile Measure: 1180
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 4-6, Age 9-11
Book type: Juvenile Non-Fiction
Physical Information: 8.75" H x 7.25" W x 0.50" (1.00 lbs) 168 pages
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 8452
Reading Level: 7.8   Interest Level: Upper Grades   Point Value: 3.0
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q00092
Reading Level: 7.1   Interest Level: Grades 6-8   Point Value: 6.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Contributor Bio(s):
Jim Murphy is the author of An American Plague, which received the Sibert Medal and a Newbery Honor and was selected as a National Book Award finalist. His Clarion titles include THE BOYS' WAR and other award-winning nonfiction as well as a picture book, FERGUS AND THE NIGHT-DEMON. He lives in Maplewood, New Jersey, with his family. For more information visit

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 1994)
Murphy describes the journey Robert Louis Stevenson took in 1879 from Scotland to California to see the woman he loved. The vivid account of the train trip across America with other emigrants makes extensive use of Stevenson's own words about the exhausting and often unpleasant experience. Skillfully interwoven into the narrative is a general history of the growth of the transcontinental railroad. An inviting volume, abundantly illustrated with black-and-white photographs and reproductions. Bib., ind. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 1993 December)
Gr 5-8-In 1879, Robert Louis Stevenson journeyed from Scotland across the Atlantic and then by train across the United States to join the woman he loved in Monterey, California. Murphy has drawn from the writer's journal to provide a fresh, primary-source account of transcontinental train travel at that time. Choosing by necessity the cheapest passage, Stevenson traveled with other newcomers to the U.S. who had not yet reached their final destination. He describes his companions, the passing countryside, the interior of the railroad cars, and daily life aboard a train. Into these journal entries, Murphy has woven meticulously researched, absorbing accounts of the building of the railroad and its effect on the territory it crossed: the disruption and destruction of Native American life, the slaughter of the buffalo, accidents, the development of the Pullman car, the towns that quickly came and vanished as the construction crews moved on, the snowsheds built to protect the trains in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Abundant, carefully selected period photographs, engravings, and lithographs are every bit as intriguing as the text. Appended is a lengthy bibliography with some original source material. This work supplements Leonard Everett Fisher's more extensive Tracks Across America (Holiday, 1992); it is a readable and valuable contribution to literature concerning expansion into the American West.- Diane S. Marton, Arlington County Library, VA Copyright 1993 Cahners Business Information.