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"No Natives or Dogs Allowed," blared the storefront sign at Elizabeth Peratrovich, then a young Alaska Native Tlingit. The sting of those words would stay with her all her life. Years later, after becoming a seasoned fighter for equality, she would deliver her own powerful message: one that helped change Alaska and the nation forever.
In 1945, Peratrovich stood before the Alaska Territorial Legislative Session and gave a powerful speech about her childhood and her experiences being treated as a second-class citizen. Her heartfelt testimony led to the passing of the landmark Alaska Anti-Discrimination Act, America's first civil rights legislation. Today, Alaska celebrates Elizabeth Peratrovich Day every February 16, and she will be honored on the gold one-dollar coin in 2020. This book is a timely addition to the history of civil rights in Alaska and our nation. Told for the first time by Alaskan author and educator Annie Boochever, in collaboration with 84-year-old Roy Peratrovich Jr., Elizabeth’s only living child, the story of this Alaskan hero will resonate with readers age 10 and up.
Annie Boochever was born and raised in Juneau. After careers as a musician and educator, she earned an MFA in Creative Writing for Children and Young Adults. Her first book, Bristol Bay Summer was an Alaska State Battle of the Books selection for middle-grades and an International Literary Classic’s award winner for Best First Novel.
Roy Peratrovich Jr., now 84-years-old, is the last living child of Elizabeth and Roy Peratrovich Sr. He cofounded the engineering firm Peratrovich, Nottingham, and Drage, and is a successful artist and author of the book Little Whale: A Story of the Last Tlingit War Canoe.
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