Thursday, August 5, 2010

Celebrations: Ruth Sawyer

Ruth Sawyer was born on August 5, 1880.

Although perhaps not a household name these days, Ruth Sawyer was highly popular in her time, and has influences the following generations of picture book authors. I must have driven my grandma crazy with the number of times I asked her to read Sawyer's Journey Cake Ho (illustrated by her son-in-law, Robert McCloskey). She si perhaps best known for her 1937 Newbery Medal winner, Roller Skates. Her first book, 1915's The Primrose Ring became a film starring Loretta Young.

One of Sawyer's most influential works, still in print today, is 1942's scholarly The Way of the Storyteller. She also collected folktales during her many travels, and published them in her own books.

In 1965, five years before her death, she was awarded the Laura Ingalls Wilder medal for her contributions.

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