Oct 252021
Miss Hickory

Miss Hickory

Carolyn Sherwin Bailey (born Hoosick Falls, New York, 1875; died Concord, Massachusetts, December 23, 1961) wrote books for children. She received the 1947 Newbery Medal for Miss Hickory. Children can read some of her works (but not Miss Hickory) at: Project Gutenberg.

Admiral Byrd

Admiral Byrd

Richard Evelyn Byrd (born Winchester, Virginia, 1888; died Boston, Massachusetts, March 11, 1957) was an explorer. He made five treks to the Antarctic, and he was the first person to fly over both the North Pole and the South Pole.

Pablo Picasso (born Malaga, Spain, 1881; died Mougins, France, April 8, 1973) was an artist. He was probably one of the most important influences on the arts. He developed cubism, and he was a very prolific artist.  Children can view a number of his works at: Pablo Picasso.

Johann Strauss (born Vienna, Austria, 1825; died Vienna, Austria, June 3, 1899) was an Austrian composer. He was known as the “Waltz King” because he wrote almost 400 waltzes. He also composed marches, polkas and operettas.

Stephanie S. Tolan (born Canton, Ohio, 1942) has written at least 25 books for children. Surviving the Applewhites earned a 2003 Newbery Honor Award. She also wrote Save Halloween. Children can visit her website at: Stephanie Tolan.

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Oct 262021
Hillary Clinton

Hillary Rodham Clinton

Hillary Rodham Clinton (born Park Ridge, Illinois, 1947) is a lawyer, politician, and former First Lady. She was the Democratic nominee for the 2016 Presidency. She was Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013. Before that she was a US senator from New York from 2001 to 2009. She is the wife of William Clinton, forty-second President of the United States; therefore, she was First Lady from 1993 to 2001. She graduated from Wellesley College and Yale Law School. Older children could visit a website at: Hillary Clinton.

Mahalia Jackson (born New Orleans, Louisiana, 1911; died Evergreen Park, Illinois, January 27, 1972) was a gospel singer. Eight of her records sold more than one million copies each. She never sang where liquor was served.

Steven Kellogg (born Norwalk, Connecticut, 1941) writes and illustrates books for children.  He illustrated among other works The Day Jimmy’s Boa Ate the Wash, published in 1980. He has written and illustrated over 40 books, including the Pinkerton series. Children could visit his website at: Steven Kellogg.

Charles Pinckney (born Charleston, South Carolina, 1757; died Charleston, South Carolina, October 29, 1824) represented South Carolina at the Constitutional Convention. During the Revolutionary War, he was captured and detained on a British prison ship. He was South Carolina’s governor from 1789 to 1792 and from 1796 to 1798. He served in both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Older children could learn more at: Charles Pinckney.

Eric Rohmann (born Riverside, Illinois, 1957) writes and illustrates books for children. He received a 1995 Caldecott Honor Award for Time Flies and the 2003 Caldecott Medal for My Friend Rabbit. Children can visit his website at: Eric Rohmann.

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Oct 272021

Enid Bagnold (born Rochester, Kent, England, 1889; died London, England, March 31, 1981) was a novelist and playwright. One of her books is National Velvet. Children could learn more at: Enid Bagnold.

James Cook

James Cook

James Cook (born Martin-in-Cleveland, near Whitby, Yorkshire, England, 1728; died Kealakekwa Bay, Hawaii, February 14, 1779) was an explorer. He made three trips though the Pacific area. He sailed around the world twice. His last voyage was to locate the Northwest Passage. He was killed by natives when he went to investigate a boat theft. Idea: Cartographers could mark his various voyages on a map. They could find out what foods he brought back to Europe.

Jared Ingersoll (born New Haven, Connecticut, October 27, 1749; died Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, October 31, 1822) represented Pennsylvania at the Constitutional Convention. A lawyer, he spoke little at the Convention, but he was well respected. Later he became a judge. Older children can learn more at: Jared Ingersoll.

Roy Lichtenstein (born New York, New York, 1923; died New York, New York, September 29, 1997) was an artist, known for his pop art movement. Some of his works resembled comic strips. Children can view some of his works at: Roy Lichtenstein.

Nicolo Paganini (born Genoa, Italy, 1782; died Nice, France, May 27, 1840) was a famed violin virtuoso. He also composed works for the violin.

Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Roosevelt

Theodore Roosevelt (born New York, New York, 1858; died Oyster Bay, New York, January 6, 1919) was the twenty-sixth president (1901-1909) of the United States. He was a sickly child, often experiencing asthma attacks. He challenged himself as an adult. He even climbed the Matterhorn. He became a lawyer; but after the death of his first wife, he ran a cattle ranch in North Dakota. During the Spanish-American War, he led the Rough Riders up San Juan Hill. Later he became governor of New York and then vice-president to William McKinley. When McKinley died, Roosevelt became the youngest president at age 42. During his presidency he established 150 million acres of national parks and forests. He authorized the building of the Panama Canal. He received the Nobel Peace Prize for helping to resolve the Russo-Japanese War. The teddy bear is named in honor of him. Children could visit a website at: Theodore Roosevelt.  They could also read Bully for You, Teddy Roosevelt by Jean Fritz, and then make a timeline of Roosevelt’s exciting life.

Dylan Thomas (born Swansea, Walsea, 1914; died New York, New York, November 9, 1953) was a poet and a playwright. His works include Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Twenty-Five Poems. Children could read some his poems at: Dylan Thomas.

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Oct 282021

Desiderius Erasmus (born Rotterdam, probably 1467; died Basel, Switzerland, July 12, 1536) was a writer and a scholar. Young adults can read some of his works at: Project Gutenberg.

Bill Gates (born Seattle, Washington, 1955) is a developer of computer software. Experts believe he is one of the richest men in the United States.

Leonard Kessler (born Ohio, 1921) has written and/or illustrated more than 200 books for children. His books include the Mr. Pine series and I Made a Line.

Jonas Salk (born New York, New York, 1914; died La Jolla, California, June 23, 1995) developed the Salk Polio Vaccine and announced his results in 1953. Older children could learn more at: Salk.

Lauren Wolk (born Baltimore, Maryland, 1956) is an author, poet, and artist. Her book Wolf Hollow received a 2017 Newbery Honor Award; her book Beyond the Bright Sea was awarded the 2018 Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction. Children could learn more at: Wolk.

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Oct 292021

Daniel Decatur Emmett (born Mount Vernon, Ohio, 1815; died Mount Vernon, Ohio, June 28, 1904) wrote the words and music of Dixie. Idea: Children could play Dixie on tissue paper-covered combs.

Valerie Worth (born Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1933; died Clinton, New York, July 31, 1994) wrote poetry and fiction for children. Her books include Fox Hill and Small Poems.

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Oct 302021
John Adams

John Adams

John Adams (born Braintree, Massachusetts, 1735; died Quincy, Massachusetts, July 4, 1826) was the second president (1797-1801) of the United States. He was a direct descendant of a Mayflower voyager. Before the Revolutionary War, he helped establish the Sons of Liberty. He was Washington’s vice president, but he felt the position was useless. Children could visit a website at: John Adams.

Louise Borden (born Cincinnati, Ohio, 1949) writes books for children. Her works include The Journey That Saved Curious George and Touching the Sky: The Flying Adventures of Wilbur and Orville Wright. Children can visit her website at: Louise Borden.

Bruce Hale (born Los Angeles, California, 1957) has written and illustrated over 25 books for children. His works include the Chet Gecko series and Snoring Beauty. Children can visit his website at: Bruce Hale.

Eric A. Kimmel (born Brooklyn, New York, 1946) has written more than 50 books for children. Trina Schart Hyman earned a 1990 Caldecott Honor Award for her illustrations in his book Herschel and the Hanukkah Goblins. He received Sydney Taylor Book Awards for The Chanukah Guest (1990) and Gershon’s Monster (2000). Children can visit his website at: Eric A. Kimmel.

Emily Price Post (born Baltimore, Maryland, 1872; died New York, New York, September 25, 1960) was a writer. She wrote several books on proper etiquette. For a time she wrote a syndicated column that appeared daily in about two hundred newspapers.

Henry Winkler (born New York, New York, 1945) is an actor, director, and author of eighteen books for children. He collaborates with Lin Oliver on the Hank Zipzer books. Children can visit the Zipzer site at: Hank Zipzer.

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Oct 312021

Jim Benton (born Michigan, 1960) writes and illustrates books for children. His works include the Franny K. Stein series and the It’s Happy Bunny series. Children can visit his website at: Jim Benton.

Michael Collins (born Rome, Italy, 1930; died April 28, 2021) was the third person on Apollo 11. He orbited the moon while Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldren landed on the moon. Collins was also a test pilot and the pilot of Gemini 10. Children can learn more at: Michael Collins.

John Keats (born London, England, 1795; died Rome, Italy, February 23, 1821) was a great English poet. Children could read some of his works at: Project Gutenberg.

Juliette Magill Kinzie Gordon Low (born Savannah, Georgia, 1860; died Savannah, Georgia, January 17, 1927) created the American Girl Scouts. When she was traveling in Europe, she became friends with Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the Boy Scouts. When she returned to the United States in 1912, she organized the first group of Girl Guides. In 1915 the organization’s name was changed to the Girl Scouts. Idea: Perhaps a Girl Scout could speak to the group.

William Paca

William Paca

William Paca (born Abingdon, Maryland, 1740; died Talbot County, Maryland, October 23, 1799) signed the Declaration of Independence. He represented Maryland. He spent quite a bit of his own money to provide supplies to the Revolutionary War soldiers. After the Revolutionary War, he became a United States district justice. He also made several suggestions regarding the Bill of Rights. Older children could learn more at: Paca.


Jip, His Story

Katherine Paterson (born Qing Jiang, Jiansi, China, 1932) is a children’s author. She earned the 1978 Newbery Medal for Bridge to Terabithia, a 1979 Newbery Honor Award for The Great Gilly Hopkins, and the 1981 Newbery Medal for Jacob Have I Loved. She received the 1997 Scott O’Dell Award for Jip, His Story, the Hans Christian Andersen Medal in 1998, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2006, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal in 2013. Children can visit her website at: http://www.terabithia.com/about.html.


All-of-a-Kind Family

Sydney Taylor (born New York, New York, 1904; died New York, New York, February 12, 1978) wrote books for children. Her books include the fascinating All-of-a-Kind Family series and Danny Loves a Holiday. After her death, her husband created the Sydney Taylor Book Award in her honor. The award honors the best Jewish writers and illustrators every year. Children can read more about Sydney Taylor and the Sydney Taylor Book Award from Children’s Book Award Handbook by Diana F. Marks.

Jan Vermeer (born Delft, Netherlands, 1632; died Delft, Netherlands, December 15, 1675) was a Dutch painter. Experts believe he painted only 35 or 36 works. Children can view several of his works at: Vermeer.

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Nov 012021

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.

Symeon Shimin (born Russia, 1902; died New York, New York, 1984) illustrated children’s books. He illustrated Onion John, by Joseph Krumgold, and Dance in the Desert, by Madeliene L’Engle. Children can learn more about him at: Symeon Shimin.

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Nov 022021

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 Native Americans, 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: http://www.storylineonline.net/harry-the-dirty-dog/.

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 032021

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 Texas 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: http://www.storylineonline.net/stellaluna/.

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, because he could eat with one hand and gamble with the other.

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