Each year, April 4 is celebrated as National School Librarians Day—and with good reason. These skilled professionals play an important role in educating our youth. Studies show that schools with librarians are more able to prepare students for the future. These students do better on tests. And they’re more prepared for the workforce and college.
In honor of them, we’ve highlighted three literary favorites who just happened to also be librarians at one point in their careers:
Jacob Grimm. Best known for co-authoring “Grimms’ Fairytales” with his brother, Jacob Grimm worked as a librarian in Germany’s Westphalia and Kasel in the early 1800s. First published in 1812, the Grimm brothers’ most famous work mostly draws on German folklore from the places they lived. The book wasn’t an immediate success. But a later version, complete with illustrations, found quick popularity. It was eventually translated into dozens of languages. And stories like “Snow White” and “Hansel and Gretel” continue to be retold today in plays and movies. Before his death in 1863, Jacob Grimm authored a total of 29 books. Wilhelm, his younger brother, helped with eight of them.
Lewis Carrol. Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, better known as Lewis Carrol, worked as a librarian in the 1850s. He worked at Christ Church, a library at England’s Oxford University. While working there, he was inspired to make up a story to entertain a young friend, Alice Liddell, and her two sisters. Dodgson was later convinced to have the story published. And Macmillan Publishers released the book, “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” in 1865. Its popularity inspired him to write a sequel, “Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There.” By the time he died in 1898, his first book had become one of the most popular children’s books in the world. And it remains so to this day.
Beverly Cleary. Famed children’s author Beverly Cleary started her professional life as a school librarian in the 1940s. She graduated from the School of Librarianship at the University of Washington, in Seattle. Her first job was at a library in Yakima, Washington. There, she realized there was little reading material for the boys who visited the library. So, she wrote her own, a book called “Henry Huggins,” which was published in 1950. Cleary went on to write more than a dozen books. And she won numerous awards, including the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award and the National Medal of Art. In 2000, the Library of Congress designated her a “Living Legend” for her work with children’s literature.
As a company that cares about education, Infinite Energy is proud to celebrate the hard work done each day by our school librarians. Happy National School Librarian Day!