Childhoods of Mediocre Americans

A girl and  her needle-nose pliers : a biography for young readers / by CollageMama.

This week I unjammed my document shredder with those needle-nose pliers.  Pretty pleased with myself.  True, if I didn't feed peculiar materials for worm compost bedding and/or mixed media collages into the machine it would work better. Then the diamond-cut shredder at work jammed, and I applied my new expertise and a liberal dose of shredder lubricant to the task.

I don't have a team of rivals or the art of power. Young kids have many over-achieving role models, with or without steroids. The first time a child gets a happy face sticker for folding his/her nap blanket, we are pondering future greatness. Never mind that blanket folding has not been accompanied by a reduced amount of digital nasal exploration, or a remembrance of things to be flushed, but I digress.

In Mrs. Ahlschwede's third grade class we read the Bobbs Merrill "Childhoods of Famous Americans" formulaic biographies.  Then we recorded the titles on lined 3x5 notecards in our very best new cursive handwriting.  Abigail Adams and Jane Addams were dull, depressing books, but I kept working my way through the alphabet picking up reading speed and comprehension.  When I was plucking books off the shelf it seemed that every female was either rolling hoops down cobble streets or wearing hoop skirts.  I couldn't even hula hoop.

Fast forward to Bernie Madoff : Young Ponzi Schemer.  I'm evaluating subtitles for my new series of deadly dull early reader chapter biographies. 
  • : Crockpot Girl of Old Nebraska
  • : Finder of Lost Fisher Price Chickens
  • : Hot Glue Sharpshooter
  • : Sight of Blood Fainter
  • : Young Letter Writer 
  • : Future Blogger
  • : Chex Mix Maven

I've never tried to insert an Excel document into a blog before. These are the 180 titles I've compiled so far for the Bobbs Merrill series, Childhoods of Famous Americans. Perhaps it will save some other obsessed person a long search.  Or it will suggest a new subtitle.

Abigail Adams A Girl of Colonial Days Jean Brown Wagoner 1961 Adams, Abigail
John Quincy Adams Boy Patriot  Anne Weil Adams, John Q.
JANE ADDAMS,  Little Lame Girl  Addams, J
Louisa Alcott Girl of Old Boston  Jean Brown Wagoner Alcott, Louisa
John Alden Young Puritan Olive W. Burt Alden, J
Ethan Allen  Green Mountain Boy  Gertrude Hecker Winders Allen, Ethan
Susan Anthony Girl Who Dared Helen Albee Monsell Anthony, S
Louis Armstrong,   Young Music Maker Dharathula Millender Armstrong, L
John Jacob Astor Boy Trader Dorothy S. Anderson Astor, J
Crispus Attucks Boy of Valor Dharathula Millender Attucks, Crispus
YOUNG AUDUBON Boy Naturalist Audubon, John James
P.T. Barnum Circus Boy Augusta Stevenson Barnum, P
Clara Barton Girl Nurse Augusta Stevenson Barton, Clara
ELIZABETH BLACKWELL Girl Doctor Joanne Landers Henry 1949 Blackwell, Elizabeth
Daniel Boone Boy Hunter Augusta Stevenson Boone, Daniel
Jim Bowie,   Boy with a Hunting Knife Gertrude Hecker Winders Bowie, J
William Bradford Pilgrim Boy Bradford Smith Bradford, W
Anne Bradstreet Young Puritan Poet Montrew Dunham Bradstreet, Anne
Jim Bridger Mountain Boy Gertrude Hecker Winders Bridger, J
Luther Burbank Boy Wizard Burbank, L
Richard Byrd Boy of the South Pole Guernsey Van Riper, Jr. Byrd, R
Andrew Carnegie Young Steelmaker Joanne Landers Henry Carnegie, Andrew
Kit Carson Boy Trapper Augusta Stevenson Carson, K
George Carver Boy Scientist Augusta Stevenson Carver, G
Walter Chrysler Boy Machinist Ethel H. Weddle Chrysler, W
George Rogers Clark Boy of the Old Northwest  Katharine E. Wilkie Clark, George R
Will Clark Boy in Buckskins Katharine E. Wilkie Clark, W
Henry Clay Young Kentucky Orator  Helen Albee Monsell Clay, H
Mark Twain Boy of Old Missouri Miriam E. Mason Clemens, S
DeWitt Clinton Boy Builder Mabel Cleland Widdemer Clinton, DeWitt
BUFFALO BILL Frontier Daredevil Augusta Stevenson 1948 Cody, William
James Fenimore Cooper Leatherstocking Boy Gertrude Hecker Winders Cooper, J
Davy Crockett Young Rifleman Aileen Wells Parks Crockett, Davy
GEORGE CUSTER Boy of Action Augusta Stevenson Custer, G
Virginia Dare Mystery Girl Augusta Stevenson Dare, V
Jeff Davis Confederate Boy Lena Young deGrummond Davis, J
Stephen Decatur Gallant Boy  Bradford Smith Decatur, S
John Deere Blacksmith Boy Margaret Bare Deere, J
Lee DeForest Electronics Boy Lavinia Dobler DeForest, L
Cecil B. DeMille Young Dramatist  Hortense Myers  DeMille, Cecil B.
George Dewey Vermont Boy Laura Long Dewey, G
Babe Didrickson Girl Athlete  Lena Young deGrummond  Didrickson, Babe
Joe DiMaggio Young Sports Hero Herb Dunn DiMaggio, J
Walt Disney Young Movie Maker Marie Hammontree Disney, W
Dorothea Dix Girl Reformer Grace Hathaway Melin Dix, Dorothea
Mary Mapes Dodge Jolly Girl Miriam E. Mason Dodge, M
Abner Doubleday Young Baseball Pioneer  Montrew Dunham Doubleday, Abner
Frederick Douglass Boy Champion of Human Rights Elisabeth P. Myers Douglass, F
AMELIA EARHART Young Aviator Beatrice Gromley Earheart, Amelia
Amelia Earhart  Kansas Girl Jane Moore Howe Earheart, Amelia
George Eastman Young Photographer  Joanne Landers Henry Eastman, G
THOMAS A EDISON Young Inventor Sue Guthridge 1947 Edison, Thomas
ALBERT EINSTEIN Young Thinker Marie Hammontree 1961 Einstein, Albert
Dwight D. Eisenhower Young Military Leader Eisenhower, Dwight D
Duke Ellington Young Music Master Martha Schaaf Ellington, Duke
William Fargo Boy Mail Carrier Katharine E. Wilkie Fargo, W
David Farragut Boy Midshipman Laura Long Farragut, David
Harvey S. Firestone Young Rubber Pioneer Adrian Paradis Firestone, H
John Fitch Steamboat Boy  Augusta Stevenson Fitch, J
Henry Ford Boy with Ideas Hazel B. Aird  Ford, H
Bedford Forrest Boy on Horseback Aileen Wells Parks Forrest, Bedford
STEPHEN FOSTER Boy Minstrel Helen Boyd Higgins Foster, Stephen
Ben Franklin Printer's Boy Augusta Stevenson Franklin, Benjamin
Jessie Fremont Girl of Capitol Hill  Jean Brown Wagoner Fremont, J
Robert Frost,   Boy with Promises to Keep Ellen Wilson Frost, R
Robert Fulton Boy Craftsman Marguerite Henry Fulton, R
LOU GEHRIG Boy to the Sand Lots Gehrig, Lou
George Gershwin Young Composer Bernice Bryant Gershwin, G
Robert Goddard  Pioneer Rocket Boy Clyde B. Moore Goddard, R
U.S. Grant Young Horseman Augusta Stevenson Grant, U
Nathanael Greene Independent Boy Howard Peckham Greene, N
Nathan Hale Puritan Boy Augusta Stevenson Hale, N
ALEC HAMILTON The Little Lion Helen Boyd Higgins Hamilton, Alexander
John Hancock New England Boy Cathrine Seward Cleven Hancock, J
Nancy Hanks Kentucky Girl  Augusta Stevenson Hanks, Nancy
Joel Chandler Harris Young Storyteller Ethel H. Weddle Harris, J
WILLIAM HENRY HARRISON  Young Tippecanoe Howard Peckham Harrison, William H.
Bret Harte Young Storyteller  Janet Branham Harte, Bret
Patrick Henry Boy Spokesman Thomas Frank Barton Henry, P
James J. Hill Young Empire Builder Mildred Houghton Comfort Hill, J
OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES, JR. Boy of Justice Montrew Dunham 1961 Holmes, Oliver Wendell, Jr.
HERBERT HOOVER  Boy Engineer Mildred H. Comfort 1965 Hoover, Herbert
Harry Houdini (Young Magician) Kathryn Kilby Borland Houdini, H
SAM HOUSTON Boy Chieftain Augusta Stevenson Houston, Sam
Elias Howe Inventive Boy Jean Corcoran Howe, E
Julia Ward Howe Girl of Old New York Jean Brown Wagoner Howe, J
Langston Hughes Young Black Poet Montrew Dunham Hughes, L
Washington Irving Boy of Old New York  Mabel Cleland Widdemer Irving, W
Andy Jackson Boy Soldier Augusta Stevenson Jackson, A
Rachel Jackson  Tennessee Girl  Christine Noble Govan Jackson, R
Tom Jackson  Young Stonewall Helen Albee Monsell Jackson, Thomas
TOM JEFFERSON A Boy in Colonial Days Helen Albee Monsell 1939 Jefferson, Thomas
Lyndon B. Johnson Young Texan Thomas Frank Barton Johnson, L
John Paul Jones Salt-Water Boy Dorothea J. Snow Jones, J
Chief Joseph Boy of the Nez Perce  Olive W. Burt Joseph
Helen Keller Handicapped Girl  Katharine E. Wilkie Keller, H
Francis Scott Key Maryland Boy Augusta Stevenson Key, F
Martin Luther King, Jr. Boy with a Dream  Dharathula H. Millender King, M
Robert E. Lee  Boy of Old Virginia Helen Albee Monsell Lee, R
John L. Lewis Young Militant Labor Leader George Gershon Korson Lewis, J
Meriwether Lewis Boy Explorer Charlotta M. Bebenroth Lewis, M
Liliuokalani Young Hawaiian Queen Shirlee Petkin Newman Liliuokalani
Abe Lincoln Frontier Boy  Augusta Stevenson Lincoln, Abraham
Mary Todd Lincoln Girl of the Bluegrass  Katharine E. Wilkie Lincoln, M
Robert Todd Lincoln President's Boy LaVere Anderson Lincoln, R
Vince Lombardi Young Football Coach  Hortense Myers Lombardi, V
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow  Grace Hathaway Melin Longfellow, H
Juliette Low Girl Scout  Helen Boyd Higgins Low, J
Dolly Madison Quaker Girl Helen Albee Monsell Madison, Dolly
Francis Marion Young Swamp Fox  William O. Steele Marion, F
John Marshall Boy of Young America Helen Albee Monsell Marshall, J
Cyrus McCormick Farmer Boy Lavinia Dobler McCormick, Cyrus
William H. McGuffey Boy Reading Genius Barbara Williams McGuffey, W
Maria Mitchell Girl Astronomer Grace Hathaway Melin Mitchell, M
James Monroe Good Neighbor Boy Mabel Cleland Widdemer Monroe, J
Samuel Morse Inquisitive Boy Dorothea J. Snow Morse, S
J. Sterling Morton Arbor Day Boy Clyde B. Moore Morton, J
Lucretia Mott Girl of Old Nantucket  Constance Buel Burnett Mott, L
John Muir Young Naturalist  Montrew Dunham Muir, J
Edward R. Murrow Young Newscaster Hortense Myers Murrow, Edward
Annie Oakley Little Sure Shot  Ellen Wilson Oakley, Annie
Osceola Young Seminole Indian Electa Clark Osceola
Robert Peary Boy of the North Electa Clark Peary, R
WILLIAM PENN Friendly Boy Miriam E. Mason Penn, William
J. C. Penney Golden Rule Boy Wilma J. Hudson Penney, J
OLIVER HAZARD PERRY Boy of the Sea Laura Long Perry, O
Zeb Pike Boy Traveler Augusta Stevenson Pike, Z
Allan Pinkerton Young Detective Kathryn Borland Pinkerton, Allan
Molly Pitcher Girl Patriot Augusta Stevenson Pitcher, M
POCAHONTAS Brave Girl  Pocahontas
Pontiac Young Ottawa Leader Howard Henry Peckham Pontiac
JOSEPH PULITZER Boy Journalist  Pulitzer, J
George Pullman Young Sleeping Car Builder Elisabeth P. Myers Pullman, G
Walter Reed Boy Who Wanted to Know Helen Boyd Higgins Reed, W
Frederick Remington Young Artist  Clyde B. Moore Remington, F
PAUL REVERE Boy of Old Boston Augusta Stevenson 1946 Revere, Paul
James Whitcomb Riley Hoosier Boy  Minnie Belle Mitchell Riley, J
Knute Rockne Young Athlete Guernsey Van Riper, Jr. Rockne, K
WILL ROGERS Young Cowboy Guernsey Van Riper, Jr. Rogers, W
Eleanor Roosevelt Courageous Girl  Ann Weil Roosevelt, Eleanor
Franklin Roosevelt Boy of the Four Freedoms  Ann Weil Roosevelt, F
TEDDY ROOSEVELT Young Rough Rider  Edd Winfield Parks 1953 Roosevelt, Teddy
BETSY ROSS Girl of Old Philadelphia Ann Weil 1954 Ross, Betsy
Babe Ruth  Baseball Boy  Ruth, Babe
Sacagawea Bird Girl Flora Warren Seymour 1945 Sacagawea
Carl Sandburg,   Young Singing Poet Grace Hathaway Melin Sandburg, Carl
Sequoyah  Young Cherokee Guide Dorothea J. Snow Sequoyah
Sitting Bull Dakota Boy Augusta Stevenson Sitting Bull
John Smith Jamestown Boy Thomas Frank Barton Smith, J
Young Jed Smith Westering Boy Olive W. Burt Smith, Jed
John Philip Sousa Marching Boy Ann Weil Sousa, J
Squanto Young Indian Hunter Augusta Stevenson Squanto
Myles Standish Adventurous Boy Augusta Stevenson Standish, M
Adlai Stevenson Young Ambassador Ward, Martha E. Stevenson, Adlai
Harriet Beecher Stowe Connecticut Girl Mabel Cleland Widdemer Stowe, H
Jeb Stuart Boy in the Saddle Gertrude Hecker Winders Stuart, J
PETER STUYVESANT Boy With Wooden Shoes Stuyvesant
Zach Taylor Young Rough and Ready Katharine E. Wilkie Taylor, Z
Tecumseh Shawnee Boy Augusta Stevenson Tecumseh
Jim Thorpe Indian Athlete Guernsey Van Riper, Jr. Thorpe, J
Harry S Truman Missouri Farm Boy Wilma J. Hudson Truman, H
Harriet Tubman Freedom Girl Gertrude Hecker Winders Tubman, H
Lew Wallace Boy Writer Martha E. Schaaf Wallace, L
John Wanamaker Boy Merchant Olive W. Burt Wanamaker, J
BOOKER T. WASHINGTON Ambitious Boy Augusta Stevenson Washington, Booker T.
GEORGE WASHINGTON Young Leader Augusta Stevenson 1959 Washington, George
Martha Washington Girl of Old Virginia  Jean Brown Wagoner Washington, M
Anthony Wayne Daring Boy Augusta Stevenson Wayne, Anthony
Dan Webster Union Boy  Bradford Smith Webster, Daniel
Noah Webster Boy of Words Helen Boyd Higgins Webster, N
Benjamin West Gifted Young Painter  Dorothea J. Snow West, Benjamin
George Westinghouse Young Inventor  Montrew Dunham Westinghouse, G
Narcissa Whitman Pioneer Girl Ann Spence Warner Whitman, N
Eli Whitney Boy Mechanic Dorothea J. Snow Whitney, Eli
Kate Douglas Wiggin The Little Schoolteacher Miriam E. Mason Wiggin, K
WOODROW WILSON Boy President Helen Albee Monsell Wilson, W
F. W. Woolworth Five and Ten Boy Woolworth
WILBUR AND ORVILLE WRIGHT Young Fliers Augusta Stevenson Wright, Wilbur, Orville
Brigham Young Covered Wagon Boy Polly Carver Jordan Young, Brigham
JOHN PETER ZENGER Young Defender of Free Press  Zenger, J
© 2013 Nancy L. Ruder

1 comment:

Christine Thresh said...

Prissy Hicks. What a name.


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