Times were hard for the people of colonial Boston in the winter of 1774. Not only had King George III of England closed the Boston harbor to punish all those who spoke against his harsh laws, he had sent thousands of soldiers, led by their commander-in-chief General Thomas Gage, to reinforce his edicts. Large numbers of British soldiers were encamped on the Boston Common, preventing the people of Boston from using their own public space. But at least the king had not closed the schools -- young Henry Price and his two brothers still had classes every day. It had snowed hard for three nights, but Henry's ninth birthday was clear, perfect for sled riding. To his delight, despite the hard times, he was given a beautiful new sled made by his father. Excited by the thought of sledding on the Common, which had the best hills in Boston, Henry and his brothers took their sleds to school. Their sister, Kate, met them at lunchtime with corn bread, apple jam, and her own sled. Together, they hurried to the Common -- only to find that British troops had put their tents and cooking fires right in the middle of the sled runs. But Henry was determined to try his new sled. Could he find a way? Based on the local lore of Boston, this tale of a courageous boy gives a rich picture of colonial life at a troubled time.
Henry complains to the governor when his sledding down the hill is thwarted by the British troops at Boston Common.