Meeting of the Society - March 18, 2007

The Randolph Caldecott Society of America recently held its Annual General Meeting/Caldecott Birthday Celebration at the Main Branch Library, in St. Augustine. The purpose of the society is to bring together those people who are dedicated to the remembrance, appreciation, and promotion of the art of Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886), nineteenth-century English illustrator, artist, and sculptor. Caldecott is buried in St. Augustine's Evergreen Cemetery. His grave received the distinction of becoming a Literary Landmark site in 2005. RCSA has placed a spring floral arrangement on the Caldecott grave site.

Mikki Sampo, Children's Librarian, The Randolph Caldecott Children's Room at the Main Library, introduced the group to the 2007 American Library Association's Caldecott Medal winning books. The Randolph Caldecott Medals are given annually for the most distinguished American picture books for children, published during the previous year. "Flotsam," illustrated by David Wiesner, received the 2007 Caldecott Medal award. The wordless book is published by Clarion. David Wiesner is now a three-time Caldecott medal winner! Narrated entirely in illustrations, the book follows a beachcombing boy as he discovers a vintage camera with the film inside! When he gets it developed, an unbelievably dazzling world is revealed. Two Caldecott Honor Books were named this year: "Gone Wild: An Endangered Animal Alphabet," written and illustrated by David McLimans, and published by Walker, and "Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom," illustrated by Kadir Nelson, written by Carole Boston Weatherford and published by Hyperion/Jump at the Sun. Recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent, ALA awards guide parents, educators, librarians, and others in selecting the best in literary materials for youth. The local Caldecott Society will be purchasing the above books to be given to the Randolph Caldecott Children's Room for the enjoyment of children in our community.

A regular program presentation was not given this year in order that the group could focus their attention on the upcoming 2008 Caldecott "Literary Tour" to England. The group last visited England in 1990 so, it is with excitement that a tour is being planned to celebrate the joint 25th Societal Anniversaries of the Randolph Caldecott Society of American and the UK Caldecott Society, both founded in 1983.

Refreshments and meeting arrangements were provided for by Linda Ginn, Alice McDaniel, Mary Ford, Dot Taylor, Gwen and Allan Reichert.

The next society meeting is planned for March 2008 at which time a program presentation will be given on "Sir Thomas Armstrong, Caldecott's Mentor and Best Friend". Thomas Armstrong served as Director of the South Kensington Museum which is known worldwide today as the Victoria and Albert Museum, in London, England.

Anyone interested in more information concerning the Caldecott Society is invited to contact Gwen P. Reichert, President or Arthur R. Boccieri, Vice President.

Submitted by:Gwen P. Reichert, President, RCSA

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