How I Found the Strong
McMullan, Margaret. How I Found the Strong: A Civil War Story. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2004.
Frank "Shanks" Russell is ten years old in the spring of 1861. He watches his father and older brother go off to join the Confederate Army. Now the man of the house, Shanks helps his mother and their loyal slave Buck work their Mississippi family farm. His father returns, disabled; in the summer of 1863, when local lynching parties threaten Buck, Frank and his father free the slave and help him escape.
Based on family history, though the central events of the war years on the home front are the product of McMullan's imagination.