Thursday, January 11, 2007

A Traveller Who Never Left

Randolph Caldecott´s Grave - Evergreen Cemetery, St.Augustine Fl.
The Library Main Branch in St. Augustine has named the Children´s section after Randolph Caldecott.
Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886) transformed the world of children's books in the Victorian era. Children eagerly awaited the two books illustrated by him, priced at a shilling each, which came out each Christmas for eight years.
Randolph's output, however, ranged wider than this: he illustrated novels and accounts of foreign travel; he made humorous drawings depicting hunting and fashionable life; he drew cartoons and he made sketches of the famous inside Parliament and out of it; he also exhibited sculptures and paintings in oil and watercolour in the Royal Academy and galleries. Continued
Late in 1885, Mr. and Mrs. Caldecott sailed for America, once more in search of health, promising The London Graphic a series of sketches illustrative of American life. Unfortunately, the terrible winter weather and his poor health left him with little strength to work, and he died on February 13, 1886 of organic heart disease in St. Augustine, Florida, in his thirty-nineth year, "at the height of his powers and reputation".

"An artist whose sweet and dainty grace has not been in its kind surpassed: whose humour was as quaint as it was inexhaustible."
An inscription on the Caldecott memorial in St. Paul´s Cathedral ,London

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for mentioning Great Britian´s finest children´s book author and illustrator. Mr.Caldecott is well remembered here in England.We knew that he was buried in the States but had no idea that the grave is in one of our favourite places, St. Augustine.We will seek it out on our next visit. Randolph Caldecott was was the J.K.Rawlings of his day.We still have my grandmother´s books and share them with our great grandchildren.