What is this time travel short story?
June 11, 2010 1:01 AM   Subscribe

I need help finding this short story I read in 5th grade, around 1985. It was a sci-fi time travel story, possibly written for a middle grade/YA audience, and it was anthologized in a school textbook/reader.

It was pretty cool-- from what I can remember, the plot involved two girls, transported from the 19th century (the 1850s? maybe 1860s?) and into the future, so they could be studied by scientists. I remember the illustration that accompanied the story-- the girls were out sleigh riding in the snow, and they, their horses, and the entire sleigh were transported from wintertime New England into a summery meadow.

Of course, the future, while seemingly utopian, is also corporate and cold. Anyway, one of the girls gets pneumonia-- or maybe even just a cold-- and the two are quarantined. These future people are now completely terrified of these girls, and the girls are not sure why. They are eventually sent back to their own time-- and it is revealed that these people in the future have eradicated so many diseases that they have no immunity left. Even a common cold would kill them.

It was a really awesome story, like Louisa May Alcott meets Isaac Asimov. I've scanned over time travel story lists, but I can't see anything like it. Does anybody perhaps remember this story too? I'd love to read it again.
posted by suburbanbeatnik to Writing & Language (2 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
I wish I knew the answer to this, it sounds like a great read! Lots of people have luck with this sort of thing on The Vine at Tomato Nation. You might search the archives or send in an "ask the readers" question of your own.
posted by hungrybruno at 7:11 AM on June 11, 2010

Response by poster: My question was just posted to Tomato Nation, and I now have an answer! The story is actually The Summer Sleigh Ride by Betty K. Erwin. Thanks for the rec, hungrybruno!
posted by suburbanbeatnik at 5:18 PM on August 9, 2010

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