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MARGARET WISE BROWN PAPERS

de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
The University of Southern Mississippi


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Creator: Margaret Wise Brown
Title: Margaret Wise Brown Papers
Dates: [ca. 1937-1944]
Quantity: 0.30 cubic feet (1 box)
Identification: DG1129

Abstract: The Margaret Wise Brown Papers contain a manuscript, typescripts, and printed material created and accumulated by Margaret Wise Brown between around 1937 and 1944. Her papers were created from her composition of two published books and one unpublished work. Brown is celebrated for the revolutionary quality of her picture books that were based on children's everyday experiences.

Biographical Note

Margaret Wise Brown was born in Brooklyn, New York, on May 23, 1910, to Robert Bruce and Maude (Johnson) Brown. She was educated at private schools in Switzerland and Massachusetts before receiving a B.A. degree in English from Hollins College in 1932. Brown studied at the Bureau of Educational Experiments, a combined nursery and progressive research institute for child behavior, in New York City. Although she quickly understood the development of perception in young children, she felt herself unsuited to be a teacher and began writing children's books. She served as editor of children's books for the William R. Scott Inc. publishing company between 1938 and 1942, promoting a genre of early childhood literature rooted in children's everyday experiences.

Brown is celebrated for the revolutionary quality of her picture books. She acknowledged children's natural interests in novel sights, sounds, and smells, as well as their concern with being lost, alone, found, and protected. Brown produced books at an extraordinary rate between 1938 and 1952. She authored more than a hundred books, among them classics like The Noisy Book (1939), Runaway Bunny (1942), and Goodnight Moon (1947). Brown received the Caldecott Medal in 1947 for The Little Island. She traveled to France in 1952, but became ill suddenly and died at Nice on November 13.

Sources:
Major Authors and Illustrators for Children and Young Adults, ed. Laurie Collier and Joyce Nakamura (Detroit: Gale Research, 1993), 1:345-349.
Twentieth-Century Children's Writers, ed. Laura Standley Berger, 4th ed. (Detroit: St. James Press, 1995), 154-156.
Children's Books and Their Creators, ed. Anita Silvey (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1995), 95-97.


Scope and Content Note

The Margaret Wise Brown Papers contain a manuscript, typescripts, and printed material created and accumulated by Margaret Wise Brown between around 1937 and 1944. Brown's papers were created from her composition of two published books and one unpublished work. The material is organized into two series: Books and Unpublished Work.

The Books Series consists of a manuscript and a typescript for Red Light, Green Light (1944) and a dust jacket for The Noisy Book (1939). The Unpublished Work Series contains a typescript for a picture book of rhymes about everyday objects entitled The Jingle Book. It is accompanied by a letter sent to Lucy Sprague Mitchell of the Bureau of Educational Experiments, suggesting it was written around 1937-1944.


Series and Subseries

A. Books (1939-1944)

The Noisy Book (1939)

Red Light, Green Light (1944)

B. Unpublished Work [ca. 1937-1944]

The Jingle Book [ca. 1937-1944]


Restrictions

Restrictions on Use

Noncirculating; available for research.

Copyright Restrictions

The collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Reproductions can be made only if they are to be used for "private study, scholarship, or research." It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials, other than that noted above.


Related Material

The Esphyr Slobodkina Papers (DG 0905) contain production material and correspondence for The Little Fireman (1938), The Little Cowboy (1948), The Little Farmer (1948), and Sleepy ABC (1953).


Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

(Identify the item), Margaret Wise Brown Papers, de Grummond Children's Literature Collection, University of Southern Mississippi Libraries, (Cite the item's box/folder numbers).

Provenance

These papers were removed from the Esphyr Slobodkina Papers (DG 0905).

Processing Information

Processed by Hans Rasmussen, June 2003. Encoded into EAD Version 1.0 by Danielle L. Bishop. This finding aid is the product of a grant funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Container Listing

Box/Folder

.

A. Books

The Noisy Book by Margaret Wise Brown, pictures by Leonard Weisgard (New York: Harper & Row, 1939)
1/1Dust jacket, ( 1 item)
Red Light, Green Light by Golden MacDonald [pseud.], illustrated by Leonard Weisgard (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1944)
1/2Manuscript, (3 pp.)
1/3Typescript, edited, (5 pp.)



.

B. Unpublished Work

The Jingle Book [ca. 1937-1942]
1/4Typescript, edited, with letter sent, (10 pp.)



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The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
Box 5148
Hattiesburg, MS 39406
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