A Little Bit on Collecting Little Golden Books
In 1942 Simon and Schuster published the first dozen titles in Little Golden Books (LGB) series. They were priced at about 25 cents, marketed to department stores, and as an alternative to the more expensive children’s books, which at the time cost 2 to 3 dollars, were immediately popular.
There are those for whom collecting Little Golden Books is a passion, and I’ve discovered to my disappointment that the Little Golden Book collectors, like series book collectors, are not really interested in collecting outside of their area of interest. However there are some authors and even more illustrators that were published by Little Golden Books that went on to gain more mainstream popularity. There are non LGB collectors that are looking for the LGB publications by their favorite author or illustrator.
So no matter whether it is an out of print bookstore or a booth at an antique mall, I always take the time to go through the stacks of LGB to look for the following authors and illustrators:
- Margaret Wise Brown of Good Night Moon fame published 6 or so LGB
- Garth Williams the illustrator of Charlotte’s Web, illustrated many LGB
- Elizabeth Orton Jones, who won the 1945 Caldecott has at least one LGB
- Alice and Martin Provensen (illus and later authors) Caldecott and Newbury Award Winners!
- Charlotte Zolotow (author)
- Feodor Rojankovsky (illus)
- Leonard Wiesgard (illus)
- Trina Schart (Hyman) (illus)
- Clement Hurd (illus)
This checklist is by no means complete and is most definitely not definitive; there are collected authors and illustrators that I know I’ve missed. Also not included are the illustrators, most notably Eloise Wilkin, who did primarily LGB illustrations. This is just a quick list generally made up of illustrators or authors that I have non LGB collectors looking for.
Good luck in your own travails collecting Little Golden Books, it will surely be quite rewarding. If you’re already collecting Little Golden Books then by all means share some stories with us.
Here is a Little Golden Books complete list of the first batch of books printed in 1942
The Poky Little Puppy
Three Little Kittens
The Alphabet A-Z
Prayers for Children
The Little Red Hen
The Golden Book of Fairy Tales
The Animals of Farmer Jones
This Little Piggy