Childcraft, Poems and Rhymes

In my recent travels for vintage children's picture books, I scored on a set of Childcraft, The How and Why Library for the mere sum of $5.00. These books are full of great illustrations by many different artists. I have quite a few scans for you from Volume 1 that I hope you will enjoy. Can I just say how much I like these books? They are fun to look at and full of ideas and inspiration.

Don't forget to click on the pics for a bigger view.

Artist: Charles Harper

Oh Charley, how we do love thee, let us count the ways...

Artist: Gordon Laite

Artist: Gordon Laite

I like all the details in these insect illustrations.

Artist: Mary Horton

What a great rendering of happiness!

Artist: Fred Womack

Who doesn't like polka dot elephants?

Artist: Mary Horton

Great composition by this artist!

Artist: Russell Jackson

I'm really impressed by the dimensional paper art by Russell Jackson. Coming up will be a post on Jackson with more examples of his work.

Artist: Vernon McKissack

This name is new to me, but I feel like I've seen work by this artist before, anyone familar with McKissack?

Artist: William Steig

Another masterful composition!

Artist: Garth Williams

Garth Williams draws a great mouse, like the hand lettering and the way the pages are laid out.

Artist: Susan Perl

I believe Susan Perl did a lot of work for McCall's Magazine in the 60's/70's. I'm partial to pen and ink drawings.

Artist: Roger Duvoisin

Isn't this a great illustration?

Artists: Alice and Martin Provensen

Alice and Martin Provensen were a great team and this is just one of the many reasons why their work is well regarded.

Artist: Elizabeth Orton Jones

I like illustrations like these where only part of it is painted and the rest is left as line work, it's very striking.

Artist: Gail E. Haley

I have a couple books by the talented Gail Haley and will do a post on her in the future.

Artist: Mary Miller Salem

This picture takes me back to when I was a kid - nice vantage point and composition.

Artist: Leonard Weisgard

Another great illustration by the impeccable Leonard Weisgard, simple and striking.

Artist: Mary Hauge

I like the simple color scheme and tree trunk rendering in this illustration. I'm not familar with this artist, but I'd like to see more of her work.


  1. Vernon McKissack's work immediately reminded me of Vernon Grant's style.

  2. Vernon Grant did the "Snap, Crackle and Pop" characters for Rice Krispies. He lived in Rock Hill SC.

  3. I see what you mean, it's interesting that they have the same first name.

  4. Did you ever do a follow-up post about Russell Jackson? I am amazed by the one picture I've seen so far!!

    1. PS I hope that you do post an article, since I can't find a single thing about him online... :(

  5. Could you tell me the year of the book set you have? When I was younger, in France, we had a set with the same beige "leather" covers. I bought one in the US, but the books had the cardboard cover. Thanks.

    1. Jackie - I don't know how I missed your comment, but I did. My set was published in 1972 and is a hardcover set.

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  7. Tami EveslageSeptember 17, 2022 at 2:23 PM
    I know this post is quite old but I saw a link to it on Pinterest. and I wanted to thank you for sharing it. I recognized the illustration instantly, as we had this set as children and Volume 1 Poems and Rhymes was my favorite along with Volume 9 Make and Do! I don't know what happened to the rest of our books, but 52 years later I still have these two volumes! Ours were from 1970 when I was two.

  8. I need this book!!!☆♥︎★♥︎