September 29 Birthday: THE SECRET WORLD OF WALTER ANDERSON


Walter Anderson, artist, writer, naturalist
September 29, 1903-November 30, 1965

The Secret World of Walter Anderson by Hester Bass, illustrated by E. B. Lewis (Candlewick 2009)

Walter Anderson explored and studied and painted the wildlife of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. But it wasn’t until after his death that his wife discovered the glorious art he made in a cottage on Horn Island for himself. It was his secret world and soon all would marvel at its detail and depth and design.

Visit the Walter Anderson Museum for more information.

August 28 Birthday: FOR THE BIRDS: THE LIFE OF ROGER TORY PETERSON


Roger Tory Peterson, naturalist
August 28, 1908-July 28, 1996

For the Birds: The Life of Roger Tory Peterson by Peggy Thomas, illustrated by Laura Jacques (Boyds Mills Press, 2011)

Peterson’s love of all things nature began in childhood and never left him. An avid birder and environmentalist, Peterson went on to create the Peterson Guides about his favorite subjects.

The Roger Tory Peterson Instituteoffers exhibits and programs to help us understand and appreciate our natural world.

July 12 Birthday: IF YOU SPENT A DAY WITH THOREAU AT WALDEN POND. Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau, writer, naturalist, poet
b. July 12, 1817
d. May 6, 1862

IF YOU SPENT A DAY WITH THOREAU AT WALDEN POND (Henry Holt, 2012)

by Robert Burleigh
illustrated by Wendell Minor

Overview

In 1845 in
Concord, Massachusetts, Henry David Thoreau began a radical experiment:
he built a cabin in the woods and lived there, alone, examining the
world around him. He spent his days walking the shores of Walden Pond,
growing beans, observing plants and animals, and recording his
reflections in his notebook. These reflections eventually became his
seminal work Walden.
In this lovely picture book,
Robert Burleigh and Wendell Minor imagine a special day spent with the
celebrated writer and naturalist through the eyes of a child.
Together Thoreau and the young boy watch small but significant wonders
such as swimming fish, fighting ants, and clouds in the sky. It is a day
full of splendor and appreciation of the outdoor world.

April 26 Birthday: THE BOY WHO DREW BIRDS: A STORY OF JOHN JAMES AUDUBON

John James Audubon, naturalist, painter
b. April 26, 1785
d. January 27, 1851

THE BOY WHO DREW BIRDS: A STORY OF JOHN JAMES AUDUBON (Houghton Mifflin, 2004)

by Jacqueline Davies
illustrated by Melissa Sweet

Overview

John James Audubon was a boy who loved the
out-of-doors more than the in. He was a boy who believed in studying
birds in nature, not just from books. And, in the fall of 1804, he was a
boy determined to learn if the small birds nesting near his
Pennsylvania home really would return the following spring.
This book reveals how the youthful Audubon pioneered a technique
essential to our understanding of birds. Capturing the early passion of
America’s greatest painter of birds, this story will leave young readers
listening intently for the call of birds large and small near their own
homes. 
Read more at the Audubon Society website. 

April 21 Birthday – John Muir, JOHN MUIR: AMERICA’S FIRST ENVIRONMENTALIST

John Muir, environmentalist, preservationist, naturalist, conservationist

Apr. 21, 1838-Dec. 24, 1914

John Muir: America’s First Environmentalist by Kathryn Lasky, illustrated by Stan Fellows (Candelwick, 2006)
John Muir loved wide open spaces and was committed to protecting the wilderness. He founded the Sierra Club in 1892, a conservation group that carries on his work today. His work led to the first National Park in America – Yosemite.
The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, a film by Ken Burns, features a biography of John Muir.