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Amazing Impossible Erie Canal

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Gr 2-6‘Harness has done a wonderful job of making the history and construction of the Erie Canal come alive. Facts and descriptions are related in lively, accessible language, e.g.,``...then came the stake-setters, the soil-borers, the underbrush-grubbers, the tree-chopper-downers...'' The narrative is matched with illustrations that cover each page. On one double-page spread, there are miniatures of the engineers who worked on the canal; a picture of how the locks work; a map of progress; a drawing of a swamp in which workers died of malaria; a stump-removal machine; the tow path; the low bridges; and a cross-section diagram showing the depth and width of the canal. All of the colorful illustrations are peppered with active people. Children will pore over these fascinating details.‘Kate Hegarty Bouman, Susquehanna Valley Junior High School, Conklin, NY

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