Witch of Blackbird Pond, The - Study Guide
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1959 Newbery Medal winner.
After the death of her grandfather, 16-year-old Kit leaves her rich Caribbean home to live in America with her Puritan aunt and uncle in Connecticut. Kit's Uncle Matthew is a strict man, and he expects her to work hard if she is to be part of his household. Kit is willing to work, though she is unused to manual labor and unskilled at the many tasks she is given to do. Then Kit discovers the Meadows, the great level sea of green grasses that remind her of her home in Barbados. Kit finds refuge in the Meadows and at the home of Hannah Tupper, a kindly old woman living near Blackbird Pond on the edge of the Meadows. Hannah is a Quaker, considered by many of the townspeople to be a heretic because she won't attend their church, and who some therefore suspect of being a witch.
Though she is forbidden to visit Hannah, Kit cannot stay away. She finds that she needs Hannah's comforting friendship just as much as Hannah, living alone in a tiny ramshackle house, needs her help. Hoping to keep her relationship with the old woman a secret, Kit continues to work at being a contributing part of the family and community. When an illness sweeps through the community, the townspeople blame Hannah, calling her a witch, for bringing disease and death to their town. Risking everything to save Hannah from a violent mob, Kit's relationship with the old woman is revealed, and Kit finds herself standing trial before the community on the charge of witchcraft.