Nov 012017

Stephen Crane (born Newark, New Jersey, 1871; died Badenweiler, Germany, June 5, 1900) was an author. He is especially known for his short stories. His The Red Badge of Courage was written about the Civil War. He died at an early age from tuberculosis, made more serious by a bout of malaria fever. Children can read some of his works at: Project Gutenberg.

Hilary Knight (born Long Island, New York, 1926) is a children’s author and illustrator. He has illustrated more than 50 books and has written more than nine books. He is best known as the illustrator of the Eloise series. Children can visit his website at: Hilary Knight.

Crawford Williamson Long (born Danielsville, Georgia, 1815; died Athens, Georgia, June 16, 1878) was the first doctor to use ether in an operation performed in 1842.

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Nov 022017

Marie Antoinette (born Vienna, Austria, 1755; died October 16, 1793) was queen of France during the French Revolution. Daughter of the Emperor of Austria, she married the French dauphin when she was fifteen years old. The dauphin became king in 1774. The country was close to bankruptcy, and the court’s extravagant life style turned the people against them. Legend says that when she heard that the poor had no bread to eat, she stated, “Let them eat cake.” The king and queen tried to escape the country, but they were discovered and imprisoned. He was beheaded in January of 1793. She died at the guillotine in October of 1793.

Daniel Boone

Daniel Boone

Daniel Boone (born Berks County, Pennsylvania, 1734; died St. Charles County, Missouri, September 26, 1820) was a pioneer, explorer and army officer. His life has inspired many stories. He was captured by the Indians, but he later escaped. The British also seized him, but he got away soon after. He spent his life in the rugged frontier. Children could learn more about him at: Daniel Boone

Alyssa Satin Capucilli (born Brooklyn, New York, 1957) is a children’s author. Her books include the Biscuit series. Children can visit her amazing site and enjoy the free activities and reader’s theater at: Alyssa Satin Capucilli

Margaret Bloy Graham (born Toronto, Canada, 1920; died Belmont, Massachusetts, January 22, 2015) wrote and illustrated books for children. She illustrated the Harry the Dirty Dog series, written by her then-husband, Gene Zion. She received a Caldecott Honor Award in 1952 for The Storm Book and another Caldecott Honor Award in 1955 for Really Spring. Children can see Betty White read Harry the Dirty Dog at:

Warren G. Harding

Warren G. Harding

Warren Gamaliel Harding (born Corsica, Ohio, 1865; died San Francisco, California, August 2, 1923) was the twenty-ninth president (1921-1923) of the United States. Before he became president, he served as a state senator, a lieutenant governor, and a United States senator. He felt high tariffs and low taxes would help America. Unfortunately, some of his appointees were dishonest, and his administration was marred. He died of an embolism while in office. After his death, his wife destroyed many of his letters. Children can visit a website at: Warren Harding.

Natalie Kinsey-Warnock (born Newport, Vermont, 1956) is a children’s author. One of her books is Gifts from the Sea, published in 2005. Children can visit her website at: Natalie Kinsey-Warnock

Barbara Knutson (born South Africa, 1959; died St. Paul, Minnesota, May, 2005) wrote and illustrated books for children. Her works include How the Guinea Fowl Got Her Spots and Love and Roast Chicken. Children can learn more at: Barbara Knutson

James Knox Polk

James Knox Polk

James Knox Polk (born Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, 1795; died Nashville, Tennessee, June 15, 1849) was the eleventh president (1845-1849) of the United States. He served in the House of Representatives for seven terms. At one point he was Speaker of the House. He became Tennessee’s governor, and then he felt his political career was over. However, in 1844 he became the darkhorse candidate and won the election. During his administration over one million square miles of territory were added to the United States. He did not run for a second term, and he died three months after leaving the White House. Children can visit a website at: James Knox Polk.

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Nov 032017

Stephen Fuller Austin (born Wythe County, Virginia, 1793; died Columbia, Texas, December 27, 1836) was a Texas hero. He founded a settlement in Texas in 1822 when the land belonged to Mexico. He was imprisoned when he pushed for Texas autonomy, but he was given his freedom in 1835. He ran against Sam Houston for the presidency of Texas, but he lost. The state capital is named in honor of him.

William Cullen Bryant (born Cummington, Massachusetts, 1794; died New York, New York, June 12, 1878) was an American poet. Children can read some of his works at: Project Gutenberg

Janell Cannon (born Saint Paul, Minnesota, 1957) is a children’s author and illustrator. Most of her books feature animals, and her most famous book is Stellaluna. Children can watch Pamela Reed read Stellaluna on Storyline Online at:

Bette Bao Lord (born Shanghai, China, 1938) is a writer and an activist. She wrote In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson, published in 1984.

A Sandwich

A Very Tasty Sandwich!

John Montague, Fourth Earl of Sandwich (born London, England, 1718; died London, England, April 30, 1792) invented the sandwich. He held many posts, including lord of the admiralty. Captain Cook named the Sandwich Islands in honor of him in 1778. According to legend, he created the sandwich as a way of saving time during a gambling party in 1762.

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Nov 042017

M. T. Anderson (born Stow, Massachusetts, 1968) is a children’s author. One of his books is The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing. Children could visit his very interesting website at: M. T. Anderson

Laura Bush

Laura Welch Bush

Laura Welch Bush (born Midland, Texas, 1946) is the wife of George W. Bush, the forty-third president of the United States. She is the only First Lady to have twins. Children could visit a website at: Laura Bush

Walter Leland Cronkite (born St. Joseph, Missouri, 1916; died New York, New York, July 17, 2009) was a journalist and television anchorperson. He was a pioneer in television news reporting. He was one of the first news reporters to break the news of the death of John F. Kennedy.

Gail E. Haley (born Charlotte, North Carolina, 1939) is a children’s book author and illustrator. Her A Story, A Story was the 1971 Caldecott winner. Gail also received the Kate Greenaway Award for The Post Office Cat. Children could visit her website, filled with videos and activities, at: Gail Haley

Sterling North (born Edgerton, Wisconsin, 1906; died Whipanny, New Jersey, December 21, 1974) was a children’s author. He wrote Rascal, the 1964 Newbery Honor Award book. His hometown bought his childhood home and created a museum. Children could visit the museum’s website, especially the photos, at: Sterling North

Will Rogers (born Oolagah, Indian Territory (now called Oklahoma), 1879; died in a plane crash near Point Barrow, Alaska, August 15, 1935) was a famous humorist, writer, and actor.

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Nov 052017

Raymond Bial (born Danville, Illinois, 1948) is a children’s author. He combines his writing with photography to create photoessays. He has published over a hundred books. Children could visit his website at: Raymond Bial

Larry Dane Brimner (born Saint Petersburg, Florida, 1949) is a children’s author. He has written over 150 books. One of his books is Black & White: The Confrontation between Reverend Fred L. Shuttlesworth and Eugene “Bull” Connor. The book was named a Robert F. Sibert Honor Book, and it received the 2012 Carter G. Woodson Award. Children could visit his website at: Larry Dane Brimner.

Roy Rogers (born Leonard Slye in Cincinnati, Ohio, 1912; died Apple Valley, California, July 6, 1998) was a singer and an actor. He is famous for his cowboy roles in the early days of movies and television.

Ida Minerva Tarbell (born Erie County, Pennsylvania, 1857; died Bethel, Connecticut, January 6, 1944) was a writer and historian. She meticulously researched her subjects, and she set a new standard for investigative reporting. Children could read some of her work at: Project Gutenberg

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Nov 062017

James Naismith (born Almonte, Ontario, Canada, 1861; died Lawrence, Kansas, November 28, 1939) invented basketball in 1891. He was given the task of designing a game that could keep track and field athletes in shape and be played indoors during the cold winter. He created the first hoop from a peach basket, and the first basketball was actually a soccer ball.

Adolphe Sax (born Dinant, Belgium, 1814; died Paris, France, February 7, 1894) invented the saxophone and all its relatives. He became famous and wealthy. Children could watch and hear a saxophone and a HUGE saxophone being played at: Saxophone. Is the saxophone a woodwind instrument or a brass instrument?


John Philip Sousa

John Philip Sousa (born Washington, DC, 1854; died Reading, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1932) was a band conductor and a composer. He wrote, among other works, “The Stars and Stripes Forever.” Children can visit a website devoted to his life at: Sousa. Here you can view a timeline of his life, hear a rendition of “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” and marvel at the range of his band music, songs, and operettas.

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Nov 072017

Sneed B. Collard, III (born Santa Barbra, California, 1959) has written at least 65 books for children. His works include The Prairie Builders: Reconstructing America’s Lost Grasslands and One Night in the Coral Sea. Children can visit his website at: Sneed B. Collard.

Marie Curie

Marie Curie

Marie Sklodowska Curie (born Warsaw, Poland, 1867; died Savoy, France, July 4, 1934) was a physicist. She and her husband, Pierre, worked on radioactive substances. They isolated two new elements, radium and polonium. She, her husband, and a third scientist received the 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics. She was the first woman to receive any Nobel Prize. She also won the 1911 Nobel Prize in chemistry for her extended work on radium. Kathleen Krull wrote an excellent biography of the scientist, Marie Curie (Giants of Science).

Call It Courage dustjacketArmstrong Sperry (born New Haven, Connecticut, 1897; died Hanover, New Hampshire, April 26, 1976) was a children’s author and illustrator. He wrote over 25 books, and his book Call It Courage was awarded the 1941 Newbery Award. Children could visit his granddaughter’s website honoring her grandfather at: Armstrong Sperry

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Nov 082017

John Dickinson

John Dickinson (born Talbot Count, Maryland, 1732; died Wilmington, Delaware, February 14, 1808) was a Revolutionary War hero. He was known as the Penman of the Revolution because of the various papers he wrote. He fought at the Battle of Brandywine in Pennsylvania. After the Revolutionary War, he was governor of both Delaware and Pennsylvania, and for two months he was the governor of the two states at the same time! He helped draft the Articles of Confederation, but he knew that the country needed a strong central government. He attended the Constitutional Convention and approved the new government framework.

Edmund Halley (born London, England, 1656; died Greenwich, England, January 14, 1742) was an astronomer and mathematician. Halley’s Comet is named in his honor. He first saw it in 1682. After conducting some research, he realized the comet returned approximately every seventy-six years. It has been sighted 28 times. The first recorded sighting was in 240 BC. Children can view an excellent video about Halley’s Comet at: Edmund Halley

Margaret Mitchell (born Atlanta, Georgia, 1900; died after being struck by a car in Atlanta, Georgia, August 16, 1949) was a writer. Her most famous book, Gone with the Wind, has sold over 30 million copies and has been translated into 30 languages. It received the 1937 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.

Bram Stoker (born Dublin, Ireland, 1847; died London, England, April 20, 1912) was a writer. He wrote at least twelve books and many short stories. However, he is most famous for his book Dracula. You can read Dracula and other works by him at: Project Gutenberg

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Nov 092017

Banneker’s Almanac

Benjamin Banneker (born near Baltimore, Maryland, 1731; died Baltimore, Maryland, October 9, 1806) was an African American known for his accomplishments in astronomy, surveying and mathematics. During the years 1791 until 1796, Banneker recorded information regarding weather, astronomy, and the tides. He compiled this information into an almanac. Other prominent Americans, including Benjamin Rush, added their own essays. The works were published, and Thomas Jefferson received a copy of the first almanac. Children can learn more at: Benjamin Banneker

Angel Baby

Pat Cummings (born Chicago, Illinois, 1950) is a writer and illustrator. One of her books is Angel Baby. Children could visit her website at: Pat Cummings

Lois Ehlert (born Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, 1934) writes and illustrates children’s books. Her Color Zoo was a Caldecott Honor Book in 1989. Children could watch a video filled with excerpts of her books at: Lois Ehlert

Florence Sabin (born Central City, Colorado, 1871; died Denver, Colorado, October 3, 1953) was a pioneer for women in medicine. She was the first woman to earn a full professorship at a medical college, and she was the first woman to be elected to the National Academy of Sciences. She was prominent in the study of tuberculosis. She also advocated for better health rights.

Kay Thompson (born St. Louis, Missouri, 1908; died New York, New York, July 2, 1998) was an actor and an author. She wrote the Eloise series. Children could visit a website at: Eloise

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Nov 102017

Holly Black (born West Long Branch, New Jersey, 1971) is a children’s author. She and Tony DiTerlizzi wrote The Spiderwick Chronicles. Children could visit her website at: Holly Black

Neil Gaiman (born England, 1960) is a children’s author and graphic novelist. His book The Graveyard Book won the Newbery Award in 2009. Children could visit his website at: Neil Gaiman

Martin Luther (born Eisleben, Saxony, 1483; died Eisleben, Saxony, February 18, 1546) was a priest who actually started the Protestant movement. He nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of Wittenberg’s castle church on October 31, 1517. He also was an accomplished musician. He was excommunicated from the Roman Catholic Church and married a former nun, Katherine von Bora. Older children could read a transcription in English of his statements at: Ninety-Five Theses.

Kate Seredy (born Budapest, Hungary, 1899; died Middletown, New York, March 7, 1975) wrote and illustrated many books for children. Her The Good Master was awarded the 1935 Newbery Honor Award. The White Stag won the 1936 Newbery Award. Then The Singing Tree was awarded the 1940 Newbery Honor Award. Her illustrations for The Christmas Anna Angel were recognized with the 1945 Caldecott Honor Award. Children could learn more at: Kate Seredy

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