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There’s a field trip today
And Michael’s delighted
But it’s not the hook and ladder truck in the bay
That has him excited!
It’s a request that he asks of others all-day
Join him on the trip to Fire Station 8
And see if what he wants comes his way!
Little Michael is in third grade in 1955 and he’s excited about the upcoming school field trip to the local fire station. As he goes through the day with his family, friends, classmates, and school staff he learns about the fire station and the importance of representation to everyone.
This storybook is the first in a series of children’s picture books about Halls Hill, a formerly segregated neighborhood in Arlington, Virginia. The stories are dramatizations of real people, organizations, and institutions from the period 1866 to 1966 when the neighborhood was walled in and discriminated against by the government and society due to institutional racism.
Langston School and Fire Station 8 were both real places in the Hall’s Hill community. Fire Station 8’s Captain Alfred Clark’s heroism was featured in the Washington Post. Third-grade teacher Evelyn Reed Syphax was married to Firefighter Archie Syphax. She was a leader in education in Arlington and became the first African American member of the Arlington County School Board. Michael Jones, Lance Newman, and Ronnie Deskins were three of the four children who desegregated schools in the Commonwealth of Virginia on February 2, 1959.
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May 14, 2022