Voices of Revolution

Think About the Selection

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Think About the Selection

  1. What is it like for Katie to be a member of a Tory family living among rebel neighbors? How does the conflict make her feel?

  2. If you were Katie's friend Celia Warren, would you stop speaking to Katie? Explain what you would do and why.

  3. Katie says "It was not fair" for rebels to break into her house. Do you agree with her? Why or why not?

  4. Do you think Katie was right or wrong to run back to her house? Explain your answer. Find evidence from the selection that supports your opinion.

  5. What causes John Warren to leave the trunk lid open and call the other rebels away? What effect does his action have on Katie?

  6. Katie says that John Warren left a "seam of goodness there, and we were all tied to it" on page 303. What does she mean? What effect might that "seam of goodness" have on her family?

  7. Connecting/Comparing Both Katie and Paul Revere face challenges caused by the conflict with England. What do you think is the biggest challenge each one faces? How does each respond to that challenge?


Write a Scene for a Screenplay

Assume that Katie's Trunk is going to be made into a movie. Write a screenplay for one scene. For example, you might choose the scene in which Katie hides after hearing the rebels at the door.


  • Write each charac­ter's name before his or her lines.

  • Write instructions telling the actors where to move and how to say their lines.



Make a Mobile

On p. 298, Katie notices things that represent home for her. Create a mobile using card­board, magazine photographs, drawings, or foil to show things that represent home for you. Thread string through your creations and tie them to a hanger.

Bonus Write a poem about your family to hang from your mobile.

Listening and Speaking

Hold a Debate

Reread what Katie's mother says about the Boston Tea Party and other conflicts. Do you agree with her? With a partner or small group, make a list of reasons support­ing the Patriot or Tory point of view. Invite another group to take the opposite point of view. Present your opinions to the class in a debate.


  • Be sure each group has equal time to speak.

  • Support your opinion with strong reasons.

  • Give a summary at the end of the debate.


Write a Review

Write your own review of Katie's Trunk. What did you like? What didn't you like? Explain why. Then post your review on Education Place. www.eduplace.com/kids


Primary Sources Link

Skill: How to Read Primary Sources

Before you read...

Ask yourself: What event or issue does this document tell about? Who wrote it?

While you read...

  1. Use a dictionary to look up meanings of unfamiliar words.

  2. Ask yourself: What is the writer's point of view?

  3. Summarize the main idea of the passage.

In Their Own Words

The men and women who lived at the time of the American Revolution speak to us in their own voices through primary source documents. These materials may include letters, diaries, newspaper articles, speeches, cartoons, and maps. They give us firsthand information about what people - both famous and little-known – really thought and how they lived.


When war began, the American army urgently needed soldiers. Notices like this one were posted to persuade men to enlist.

Cambridge, April 28, 1775

To: The Massachusetts Committee of Safety An Appeal for Help


The barbarous murders committed on our innocent brethren on Wednesday the 19th ... have made it absolutely necessary that we immediately raise an army to defend our wives and children from the butchering hands of an inhuman soldiery... [They] will, without doubt, take the first opportunity in their power to ravage this devoted country with fire and sword.

Death and devastation are the certain conse­quences of delay. . . . Hasten and encourage, by all possi­ble means, the enlistment of men to form the army, and send them forward to headquarters at Cambridge.



After the clash between the colonists and the British on April 19, 1775, a British officer wrote this letter to his father. What is his opinion of the Yankees?

Boston, April 23, 1775

My Dear Sir,

It is impossible (for you not to] hear an account, and probably a most exaggerated one, of the little fracas that happened here a few days ago between us and the Yankee scoundrels. Our bicherings and heart burnings, as might naturally be expected, came at length to blows, and both sides have lost some men ... The rebels, you know, have [for] a long time been making preparations as if to frighten us ... Though they are the most absolute cowards on the face of the earth, yet they are just now worked up to such a degree of enthusiasm and madness that they are easily persuaded ... that they must be invincible.

from the Memoir and Letters of Captain Evelyn



<<Lawrence River in Ontario, Canada./

The Ingraham family, like thousands of other Loyalists, fled to Canada after the American Revolution. Years later, Hannah Ingraham described her family's move from Albany, New York, to the province of New Brunswick, Canada, in the autumn of 1783, when she was eleven years old.

It was a sad, sick time after we landed in Saint John. We had to live in tents. The government gave them to us and rations, too. It was just at the first snow then, and the melting snow and the rain would soak up into our beds as we lay. Mothergot so chilled and developed rheumatism and was never well afterwards.

[Later we went] up the river in a schooner and were nine days getting to St. Anne's.... We lived in a tent at St. Anne's until Father got a house ready. One morning when we awoke, we found the snow lying deep on the ground all around us. Then Father came wading through it and told us the house was ready and not to stop to light afire and not to mind the weather, but follow his tracks through the trees.... It was snowing fast and oh, so cold. Father carried a chest and we all took something and followed him up the hill. There was no floor laid, no windows, no chimney, no door, but we had a roof. ... We toasted bread [around a small fire] and all sat around and ate our breakfast that morning. Mother said . . . "This is the sweetest meal I ever tasted for many a day. "


Get Set to Read

Background and Vocabulary

James Forten

Read to find the meanings of these words.

e Glossary






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