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Newsletter Archive

Spring 2001


2001 Kerlan Award

Jane Resh Thomas
On Saturday, April 21st, author Jane Resh Thomas, and illustrator Don Freeman (deceased), will be honored as the recipients of the 2001 Kerlan Award. The award is presented annually "in recognition of singular attainments in the creation of children's literature and in appreciation for generous donation of unique resources to the Kerlan Collection for the study of children's literature." Jane Resh Thomas will be the keynote speaker and Don Freeman will be honored, posthumously.

The Kerlan Collection has original manuscripts for twelve of Jane Resh Thomas' titles including Behind the Mask: the Life of Queen Elizabeth I (Clarion Books, 

1998), The Comeback Dog (Houghton Mifflin, 1981), Courage at Indian Deep (Clarion Books, 1984),  Elizabeth Catches a Fish (Seabury Press, 1979), and Saying Goodby to Grandma (Clarion books, 1988), along with correspondence from publishers, and children.

Don Freeman
The Kerlan Collection has original illustrations and manuscript material for more than forty-six of Don Freeman’s titles including Bearymore (Viking Press, 1976), Best Friends (Golden Gate Jr. Books, 1967), Come Again Pelican (Viking Press, 1961), Flash the Dash (Children’s Press, 1973) Penguins of All People! (Viking Press, 1971), and Tilly Witch (Viking Press, 1969). 

The Kerlan Award event will begin at 9:30 A.M. at the Elmer L. Andersen Library, 222 21st Avenue South. Minneapolis, MN on the University of Minnesota's West Bank campus. The Red Balloon Bookshop will sell books before and after the breakfast buffet and awards.

This Kerlan Friends event is supported in part by University of Minnesota departments, and the Minnesota Humanities Commission.

To attend please click & print out the reservation form.  Click here for driving & parking directions. For further information, please call (612) 624-4576.
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From The Curator

Minnesota is Children's Book Country

Lake Wobegon, where all the children are above average, possesses a children's book community well above average, too. The Minnesota Humanities Commission and its Humanities Education Center now    houses the Minnesota Center for the Book, a state affiliate of the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress.

With awards, area authors and illustrators, publishers, libraries, contemporary and second hand bookstores, journals, and community centers and colleges offering children's literature courses and conferences, our area's book climate is vibrant.

A committee selected a local author, Jane Resh Thomas, as a 2001 Kerlan Award recipient. She   donated manuscripts for all her children's and young adult books. Minnesotans Marion Dane Bauer and Wanda Gag (posthumous) are among previous author recipients in its twenty five year history.

The 13th Annual Minnesota Book Award ceremony is Friday evening, April 20, on the eve before the Kerlan event. Many past recipients of the children's and young adult categories donated manuscripts or art to the Kerlan Collection over the years. These include Marion Dane Bauer, William Durbin, Michelle Edwards, Barbara Juster Esbensen, Kristine Franklin, Jim Latimer, Megan McDonald, Audrey Osofsky, Gary Paulsen, Lisa Westberg Peters, Marsha Qualey, Karen Ritz, Phyllis Root, Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen, Jane Resh Thomas, and Maryann Weidt.

Area publishers such as Afton Historical Society Press, Lerner Publications, and Minnesota Historical Society Press give voice to some authors and illustrators in our area. Public libraries with their  branches, school and pre-school media centers, and even some churches have abundant book collections for children.

The Bookcase in Wayzata, Micawber's in St. Anthony Park, The Red Balloon Bookshop in St. Paul, Ruminator Books, Wild Rumpus in Minneapolis, Barnes & Noble, Borders, and similar stores, offer a myriad of books for purchase and autograph sessions. Stillwater, Duluth and the Twin Cities are home to several rare book and second hand bookstores.

Five Owls, Once Upon a Story and Riverbank Review have editorial offices in Minnesota. In chronological as well as alphabetical order, each journal has a national distribution for its book reviews and informational articles.

The Loft offers courses in writing children's and young adult stories, as do some area authors themselves. Writing groups abound where writers read from in-process works on a pre-determined schedule. Most universities and colleges in Minnesota offer courses in some aspect of children's literature in their English or Education curricula. For almost every month of the year, there is a lecture, symposium or conference open to the public. Tree House Breakfast and the Hubbs Conference at the University of St. Thomas occur on a Saturday in February.

Minnesota Book Awards in St. Paul, "Spotlight on Books" in Alexandria or Bemidji, and the Kerlan Award at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis are usually April events. The University of Minnesota's College of Education sponsors Chase Lecture and St. Cloud State's two-day Children's Literature Workshop occur in June. Summer Session and CLRC's 24th Annual Children's Literature Summer Forum series is scheduled for Thursday afternoons typically from June to August. The 11th Annual Twin Cities Book Fair in July converges on the State Fairgrounds. Anderson Center (Red Wing), Upper Midwest Booksellers Association and Minnesota Library Association Annual conferences are usually in September. The University of Minnesota's Book Week Banquet traditionally has been in October, and this year the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators will sponsor its annual meeting for the same month. Public and school libraries celebrate Children's Book Week in November.

While the Children's Literature Research Collections is committed to acquiring books, manuscripts and art from the total national scene, we nevertheless take special pride in our holdings representing our state. Minnesota, where founder Irvin Kerlan, MD was born, has a wealth of resources and program events of interest to devotees of children's literature.

--Karen Nelson Hoyle, Curator

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Study from Juma and the Magic Jinn
Heroes and Legends: Book Illustrations by Charles Mikolaycak, April 4th - May 25th, 2001.
This exhibit which will feature approximately thirty original drawings will demonstrate the stages in Mikolaycak’s working process, ranging from thumbnail sketches and preliminary figure studies through detailed oil on paper overlays and finished publications. This traveling exhibit, organized by the University of Scranton, in cooperation with Carole Kismaric and the Kerlan Collection, will be housed in Andersen Library and runs from April 4th - May 25th. Exhibit hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Entitled “Heroes and Legends: Book Illustration by Charles Mikolaycak,” the display begins with an opening reception on Wednesday, April 4th, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. At 3:15 p.m. Judith Johnson, Ph.D, Design, Housing & Apparel presents 

“Charles Mikolaycak: Through the Eye of the Illustrator,” a slide presentation about Charles Mikolaycak in room 120 Andersen Library. The opening is free to the public.

 Please RSVP to the Children’s Literature Research Collections by March 30, 2001.  Please send RSVP’s to Jenny Hanson, CLRC Library Assistant, at 612-624-4576 or e-mail to

For further information, please contact CLRC at 612-624-4576.

Paul Bunyan’s Ring used in Exhibit
Mark Dion: Cabinet of Curiosities, at the Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota. February 24 - May 27, 2001. Internationally known artist Mark Dion utilizes the European Renaissance tradition of the Wunderkammern (literally “wonder chamber” or cabinet of wonder), Dion examines the distinctions between ojective science and subjective art and the logic of classifying systems to create a truly fascinating display. The exhibition was curated by Dion and Colleen Sheehy, Weisman director of education, working with University graduate and undergraduate students.

This exhibit borrowed materials from the Kerlan, Hess and Paul Bunyan Collections. For more information, call 612-625-9494.

Emily Arnold McCully Exhibit, University of St. Thomas. Selections from the Kerlan Collection from Emily Arnold McCully’s books The Playground, School, Molly at the Library, and Jam Day, were on exhibit at St. Thomas during the month of February.

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Coming Events

March 30-31: Spotlight on Books, Northern Lights Library - Northern Inn, Bemidji. For furthur information, check with the NLLN office, Phone & Fax: 320-762-1032. Or e-mail:

April 4: Charles Mikolaycak Exhibit Opening. See Exhibits for more information.

May 3-6: Festival of Nations. Theme: "Cultural Customs and Adornment". Rivercentre. St. Paul. For more information,

Roberto Piumini
May 17: Roberto Piumini, one of the foremost Italian writers for children, will speak at Andersen Library Room 120, on Thursday, May 17, at 3 pm.

Professor Jack Zipes, author of many children’s books and Professor of German, Scandinavian, & Dutch Studies at the Universtiy of Minnesota, will introduce Mr. Piumini. The Children’s Literature Research Collections, Center for German and European Studies, Friends of the Library, Kerlan Friends and other co-sponsors are pleased to present a talk by Roberto Piumini entitled “A Man of Words.” Piumini is regarded as one of the most innovative writers of children’s literature in Italy. Born and educated in Milan, Piumini has worked as an actor, translator, and dramatist.

He has published over 30 books for children, and several have appeared in English such as The Saint and the Circus, Mattie and Grandpa, The Knot in the Tracks, and The Store. A versatile and experimental writer, Piumini has written critically acclaimed novels and short stories for adults. In addition, he has translated Shakespeare’s Sonnets into English and written lyrics and musicals including those for the didactic opera La musica by Sergio Liberovici. Committed to develop quality mass-media programs for childrenn, Piumini has produced numerous shows for Italian radio and television, and he will speak about his experiences as a writer for children in Italy and about the situation of children’s literature in contemporary Italy.

June 19: Chase Lecture. Andersen Library room 120. Guest speaker: Janet Stevens, author-illustrator.

August 10-18: The National Centre for Research in Children’s Literature in England  presents Children’s Literature International Summer School (CLISS) and Children’s Literature Research Symposium: ‘The Future of the Subject’ From August 10th to August 18th, 2001. For more information contact NCRCL, Univerity of Surrey Roehampton, Digby Stuart College, Roehampton Lane, London SW15 5PH, UK. Tel: 020-8932 3008, Fax: 020-8392 3819, E-mail:

August 3: Considering Boundaries. Gregory Maguire and Tim Wynne-Jones will give a Core Lecture on Friday, August 3, 2001 at Victoria University in Toronto, Canada. “Stepping Back to Look at a Face, Leaves a Little Space in the Way, Like a Window” - Stephen Sondheim. Gregory Maguire has given manuscript material to the Kerlan Collection for The dream stealer, I feel like the morning star and Lucas fishbone.
For more information contact Martha Walke at 978-433-1911.

October 16: Book Week Banquet, featuring author/illustrator Patricia Polacco will be held on Tuesday, October 16, 2001.

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The Kerlan Essay Award
The Friends of the Kerlan Collection are pleased to invite submissions for an award to be presented for an outstanding published or unpublished essay completed during the past year which references the University of Minnesota Children's Literature Research Collections as its primary data source.  The award consists of a citation and a $300 honorarium.

In evaluation of the papers, judges will emphasize the formulation of a research topic that provides a contribution to knowledge and utilizes original resources, especially manuscripts and illustrations in the CLRC. The writing style and organization of the paper are also important. Call 612-624-4576 to request specific instructions on submissions.

The deadline for entries is June 1, 2001.

The Ezra Jack Keats/Kerlan Memorial Fellowship
The Ezra Jack Keats/Kerlan Memorial Fellowship from the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation will provide $1500 to a "talented writer and/or illustrator of children's books who wishes to use the Kerlan Collection for the furtherance of his or her artistic development."  Special consideration will be given to someone who would find it difficult to finance a visit to the Kerlan Collection.

The Ezra Jack Keats Fellowship recipient will receive transportation cost and a per diem allotment.  Applications for 2001 must be received by Friday, April 27th, 2001.  For application materials, please send a self- addressed, $0.55 stamped envelope to:

Ezra Jack Keats/Kerlan Collection
Memorial Fellowship
113 Andersen Library
222 21st Avenue South
University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN 55455

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Recent Visitors

Author, Emily Arnold McCully, autographed her books for the Kerlan Collection after the Hubbs Lecture on February 25th.

Professor Lee Galda's class Research in Special Collections work in the reading room Tuesday evenings.

Author, Peg Kerr visited the Collection on February 19th.

St. Olaf students Susan Balmer and Julia Newell visited the Collection and enjoyed reading for their personal enjoyment.

On February 8, University student Nick Halverson examined material in the Collection for his undergraduate paper in Scandinavian Fairy Tales.

Christine Hunter critiqued illustrations by Karen Ritz for her undergraduate paper in Introduction to Visual Arts.

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Research Based on CLRC Resources

Ruth Berman, Kerlan Friends Board Member. Reviewed Space songs, by Myra Cohn Livingston. New York: Holiday House, 1988 for Star*Line. Journal of the SFPA, Jan/Feb., 2001.

Jamie F. Hubbs. A History of Pulp Magazines as seen through the Detective and Science Fiction Genres, a graduate paper for Master of Library Science Program. College of St. Catherine, December, 2000.

Constance Bergum, Helena Montana, completed her MFA in Illustration from Marywood University, Scranton, Pennsylvania, in November, 2000. Her thesis was on Charles Mikolaycak's life and work.
Zoe Ingalls. “In a Minnesota Library, Dastardly Deeds Never Go Unpublished” Chronicle of Higher Education. February 7, 2001. This article features our Hess Collection and J. Randolph Cox, a retired St. Olaf College Librarian and an Honarary Consultant to the Collection.

Steven John from Minnesota Public Radio interviewed J. Randolph Cox, honorary consultant to the Hess Collection, about Dime Novels which will be aired on MPR in March.

J. Randolph Cox

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In Memoriam

Eloise Jarvis McGraw, an award-winning author of mystery, fantasy and historical fiction for children, died on November 30, 2000. The Kerlan Collection holds many of her books and manuscripts including The Golden Goblet, Merry Go Round in Oz, The Moorchild, A Really Weird Summer, The Stripped Ships, and Tangled Webb.

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Kerlan Friends

New Members of the Kerlan Friends from December, 2000 - February, 22 2001
Karissa Huntington, Roberta Mark, Larry Peterson, Barbara & Paul Rogne, David & Judith Schlief and Vienna Volante.

Kerlan Friends Renewals & Gifts from December, 2000 - February 22, 2001
Joan Arndt, Elizabeth Askey, Otto Bang Jr., Mary Bang, Cornelia Ooms Beck, Roger Boettcher, Linda Boettcher, Carolyn Briese, Sharon Chmielarz, Shirley Christenson, Sarah Colwell, Elizabeth DeGrote, Joan Dickerson, Alice O. Duggan,  Lou Ann & Robert Dykstra, Chris Dyrud, Stuart Fenton, Clifford Fortin, Bernard & Norma Gaffron, Helen George, H.M. George Books, Phyllis Haensel, Kathleen Hall, Judith Ham, Heidi Hammond, Barbara Hanson, Gary Harm, Marilyn Hobbs, Honeywell Foundation, Yvonne Hunter, Karissa Huntington, Mary Pat Johnson, Sally Kaiser, Beatrice Kotz, Julia & Nowell Leitzke, Nancy Levinson, Gary Macomber, Dianne Monson, Marcia Pankake, Linda Pannuto, Jane Paulsen, Walter Peik, Bette Peltola, Mary Ann Peterson, Patricia Pond, Virginia Puzak, Bette Ripke, Janie Schomberg, William & Adelaide Schwabacher, Sarah Smedman, Patricia Snodgrass, Norma Sommerdorf, John & Susan Stanford, Maureen Steenblock, John Stewig, Lauren Stringer, Evelyn Swenson, Margaret Virum, Katharine Weiblen and Arvella Whitmore.

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Recent Acquisitions

MS-manuscripts, IL-illustrations; Published titles are indicated by italics.  These materials have been donated by the authors and/or illustrators, or their families.  Titles for which additional materials have arrived are not listed if already reported in The Kerlan Collection: Manuscripts and Illustrations (1985) or in previous newsletters.

Bloor, Edward: MS Crusader; Tangerine

Delacre, Lulu: IL Golden tales: myths, legends and folktales from Latin America; Senior Cat's romance and other favorite stories from Latin America MS & IL Arroz con leche: popular songs and rhymes from Latin America MS Vejigante masquerade

Egner, Thorbjorn: MS Folk og røvere i Kardemomme; Dyrene i Hakkebakke skogen

Galdone, Paul: IL Battle of the kegs; Clarence and the burglar; Clarence and the cat; Dance of the animals; The greedy old fat man; The lone hunt; Miss Pickerell and the Geiger counter; Miss Pickerell goes to Mars; A strange servant; Winter danger; 100 hamburgers

Hautzig, Esther: MS Riches

Metronet: Videos Metronet collection of "All about kids"

St. George, Judith: MS So you want to be President

Smalls, Irene: CD Hearts hugs and holidays

Stock, Catherine: IL Better with two; The evening king; Too far away to touch

Viorst, Judith: MS Super-completely and totally the messiest

Yolen, Jane: MS O Jerusalem; Old dame counterpane

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New Greeting Cards For Sale

New Kerlan Notecards
The marketing committee has a surprise for you! Three new notecards will be available this spring, two of them in color.
The first is a pencil and watercolor illustration by Don Freeman from Come Again, Pelican (Viking, 1961). It is one of the items Freeman signed for Dr. Irvin Kerlan. Lovers of sand, sea and little boys will be especially charmed by this illustration.

Don Freeman (1908-1978) worked as a freelance artist and graphic artist before beginning to illustrate books in the 1940’s. The Kerlan’s papers on Freeman focus on his work as an author and illustrator of children’s books with an emphasis on the latter. The collection includes sketches, studies and illustrations done in a variety of media, dummies, and paste-ups.

Freeman is perhaps best known for Corduroy (Viking, 1968), the story of a shopworn bear who gets a home. Among Freeman’s various honors for his work is a Caldecott honor citation for Fly High, Fly Low (Viking, 1957) in 1958. Don Freeman died on February 1, 1978. He is a 2001 Kerlan Award recipient.
Who wouldn’t smile at the sight of Dora in Dora’s Book (Carolrhoda Books, 1990), as she pulls her wagon around behind her, distributing the books that are a culmination of great effort? This ink, colored pencil, and watercolor illustration is by Michelle Edwards who is also the author of this story. Wait ‘til you see the bright colors!

When she was eighteen, Edwards left her home in upstate New York to live and work on an Israeli kibbutz outside Jerusalem. While there, she drew, painted, and began to write. By the time she returned home, she had committed herself to pursuing a creative profession. She now works full time at her art out of a studio in her home in St. Paul, Minnesota, where she lives with her family.

Her books include Chicken Man (Lathrop, 1991) for which she received the National Jewish Book Award in 1992, A Baker’s Portrait (Lathrop, 1991), Pa Lia’s First Day (Harcourt, 1999) and others.

Michelle Edwards is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, Hadassah, and Phi Beta Kappa. During 2000 Edwards donated more original manuscripts and illustrations to the Kerlan.
We gasped when we saw the original pencil drawing The Owl by Charles Mikolaycak. The creature’s compelling look held us stunned, and we knew this would be our next black-and-white note card.

After starting his career as an illustrator and designer, Mikolaycak illustrated his first book for children in 1967. He is perhaps best-known for his illustrations of folktales such as Babushka: An Old Russian Folktale (Holiday House,1984), whose story he also adapted.

Besides this, and other drawings for Cricket Magazine, Mikolaycak has illustrated

books by many well-known authors, among them Jane Yolen and Eve Bunting. His work has a  strong sense of mood, time, and place, never “drawing down” for children.

The Kerlan contains production material for seventy-two of his titles published between 1969 and 1993, including unpublished manuscript material, a self portrait, and memorabilia. Charles Mikolaycak received the 1987 Kerlan Award for his contributions to children’s literature. He died on June 23, 1993.

Kerlan note cards are available for purchase by mail at the Kerlan Collection in Andersen Library for $6.50 per pack plus shipping & handling. They may also be purchased at special events such as Book Week and the Kerlan Award breakfast, and on the Kerlan web site or in person at the Collection. The new web address is: For more information please call the Kerlan Collection at 612-624-4576.

-Norma Gaffron
Kerlan Friends Marketing Chair

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The CLRC Kerlan Collection is an internationally recognized center of research in the field of children's literature. The Collection contains original materials, including manuscripts, artwork, galleys, and color proofs for more than 9,000 children's books. These materials represent eight decades of American children's books and selected books published in other countries. The Collection also includes more than 75,000 children's books.

This Spring Newsletter is co-sponsored by Kerlan Friends, CLRC, and a Minnesota Humanities Commission grant for networking

Editor: Karen Nelson Hoyle
Production Editor: Jennifer Hanson
Proof-reader: Dr. Edward B. Stanford

Children's Literature Research Collections University of Minnesota 113 Andersen Library 222 - 21st Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 55455 Telephone: 612-624-4576 FAX: 612-626-0377 E-mail:
Please make an appointment during Spring semester

Copyright 2001 by the Regents of the University of Minnesota, University Libraries
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Last revision:3/1/01
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