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How Do You Spell Unfair? MacNolia Cox and the National Spelling Bee

"MacNolia Cox was no ordinary kid. Her idea of fun was reading the dictionary." In 1936, eighth grader MacNolia Cox became the first African American to win the Akron, Ohio, spelling bee. And with that win, she was asked to compete at the prestigious National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC, where she and a girl from New Jersey were the first African Americans invited since its founding. She left her home state a celebrity — right up there with Ohio’s own Joe Louis and Jesse Owens — with a military band and a crowd of thousands to see her off at the station.

But celebration turned to chill when the train crossed the state line into Maryland, where segregation was the law of the land. Prejudice and discrimination ruled — on the train, in the hotel, and, sadly, at the spelling bee itself. With a brief epilogue recounting MacNolia’s further history, How Do You Spell Unfair? is the story of her groundbreaking achievement magnificently told by award-winning creators and frequent picture-book collaborators Carole Boston Weatherford and Frank Morrison.

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Description

"MacNolia then traveled to Washington, D.C., where she experienced segregation (even on stage, in the accompanying, pointedly wordless, picture) but 'nailed word after word.' She didn’t win the championship but proved something important by her example: 'That was MacNolia’s triumph.' Her slender figure glows with character in Morrison’s illustrations.... Spells out reasons to vow N-E-V-E-R A-G-A-I-N." — Kirkus Reviews

Product Details

Recommended Age 6 - 9
Author Carole Boston Weatherford
Illustrator Frank Morrison
ISBN 1536215546
Publication Date Apr 11, 2023
Publisher Candlewick
Language English