Molly, by Golly!: The Legend of Molly Williams, America's First Female Firefighter
By: Dianne Ochiltree
Illustrated By: Kathleen Kemly
Publisher: Calkins Creek
Publication Date: September 2012
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: July 17, 2012
It’s not often that I am graced with a children’s book that is not only a fantastic story and beautifully illustrated, but is also a walk through history that any and all adults and children will absolutely love!
Molly Williams is a very real figure. Back in the early 1800’s in New York City, Molly was a cook for a local Fire Company. She was the best at everything, making these men dishes that (will!) make your mouth water; Molly was loved and appreciated by the men.
One night, a hideous snowstorm hit the City and many of the men were struck down with influenza. And, sure enough, that’s when a blaze went up and hardly any of the men from the Company were able to respond. Molly was far more than a cook. Without even thinking about her own life, she put on the uniform and raced out into the snowstorm. She helped the men who were able to arrive pull the “fire truck” down the road and worked until ash had practically buried her in order to save the family and stop the blaze.
Molly is one of those heroic people who come along every now and then. She was full of love, kindness, and the courage to save lives! This book not only shows a very thrilling, action-filled tale - but the historical information about how fires were actually put out way back then - from what the uniforms looked like to how difficult it was to get the fire “equipment” to the blaze - is extremely interesting to read about. And, the historical facts and extra information in the back of the book will offer you and your child a very cool look into the rich, vibrant history of the American Firefighter. True heroes and heroines!
Quill Says: Perfectly written with stunning illustrations, this is by far (and, so far) the best children’s book of 2012!