Serial story set amid War of 1812

The Daily Reflector
September 11, 2012

The Daily Reflector’s Your Weekly Read series resumes next week with “Freehand,” which is published in conjunction with the bicentennial of the War of 1812.

The 10-chapter serial story, sponsored by Pitt Community College and The Daily Reflector’s Newspapers In Education program, will begin Sept. 18 and conclude Nov. 20.

“Freehand” is the story of Caleb MacCrimmons, who loves to draw but has to keep his sketchbook hidden in the straw of the barn. Whenever he is caught drawing, he gets punished for wasting time instead of doing his chores.

When a group of American soldiers retreating from the defeat in Ogdensburg stop by on their way to the base at Sackets Harbor, they offer Caleb the chance to escape his abusive homelife and to find himself in the midst of one of the most important battles of the War of 1812.

While the main character is fictional, the major events and military officers, as well as the events of the Battle of Sackets Harbor, are historically accurate.

“Freehand” is written by Mike Peterson, a former newspaper reporter and magazine writer.

Two of his stories, “Tommy and the Guttersnipe” and “Anna’s Story,” were previously featured in Your Weekly Read. Peterson’s serial stories have appeared in newspapers throughout the United States as well as in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Bermuda.

“Freehand” is aimed at an upper elementary to middle school audience. A free teaching guide, containing maps, a timeline, primary documents and historical background is available. The guide includes a matrix to assist in meeting Common Core Standards. To receive the teaching guide, visit www.reflector.com or call Elizabeth Clarke at 329-9535.

For more about information about the role of North Carolinians in that war, visti http://nc1812.ncdcr.gov/

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