November 13-18 is Children’s Book Week, sponsored by The Children's Book Council, the nonprofit trade association of children’s and young adult book publishers.
Children’s Book Week dates from 1919, when it was organized at the annual American Booksellers Association. It had its roots, however, about seven years earlier at the 1912 ABA convention when publisher E.W. Mumford delivered a paper entitled “Juvenile Readers as an Asset.” The New York Times reported on the presentation, which was a strong indictment of the harm done to children by reading “trashy” books. The head of the Boy Scouts read about the presentation and decided to partner with the ABA and the American Library Association to sponsor a “Good Book Week.” It evolved into Children’s Book Week several years later.
Since the first Children’s Book Week 86 years ago, children’s literature has certainly evolved. If you’re interested in some of the best in picture books and children’s literature published over the years, browse the list of Caldecott and Newbery medal winners on the library’s Web site. The awards are given annually by the American Library Association.
Check out the special Children’s Week activities at the Fairfax County Public Library.