Narcissa Whitman Pioneer of Oregon, Woodi Ishmael

I'm taking a printmaking class at my local technical college, so I've been looking at books with engravings, woodcuts and linocuts. I pulled out this book, Narcissa Whitman, Pioneer of Oregon by Jeanette Eaton that I bought at a book sale a few years ago. The wood engravings were done by Woodi Ishmael, who I am not familiar with, so if you aren't either we can both learn something new!

First off, Narcissa Whitman was a real person. She was one of the first white women to cross the Rocky Mountains on the trip to Washington State in 1936. She and her husband, Dr. Marcus Whitman, founded a protestant mission there
with the goal of converting the Native American Indians.

An outbreak of measles in which the Indians had little immunity to caused them to be distrustful, thinking that Marcus was only curing white people while letting Indian children die. Unfortunately this culminated in a massacre, in which both Narcissa and Marcus were killed. Narcissa was only 47 years old.

Woodi Ishmael (1914-1995), was born in Lewis County, Kentucky. He served as an official artist for the United States Air Force and did several paintings of Air Force Chiefs of Staff. Of interest, he was the only courtroom artist at the Jack Ruby Trial. (Information via Bulldog Studio)

If you are interested in viewing some of Ismael's work, you can go to this site,
The Air Force Historical Research Agency. To view other work that he did, such as advertising, here is the google link.

Narcissa Whitman
By Jeanette Eaton
Illustrated by Woodi Ishmael
Harcourt, Brace and Co., 1941


Poems to Read to the Very Young, Eloise Wilkin

My daughter Colleen left today for a teaching position in Korea. It's not the first time she has gone overseas. She studied abroad in Sevilla, Spain for a year and taught in Extremadura, Spain a couple years later. So I guess I'm broken in and definitely not a nervous wreck like the first time. But I still missed her the minute she walked out the door. How is it possible to be proud and feel sad at the same time?

So I'm comforting myself by eating a bunch of candy and showing a book I read to all my kids, (3 girls, 1 boy) and my grandson. Poems to Read to the Very Young ranks high in sentimentality for me and I love some of the poems in this book. 

Beautifully illustrated by Eloise Wilkin, who had a lovely way of portraying children. Wilkin used her children and in later years, grandchildren as models. 

Eloise Wilkin (1904-1987), an award winning illustrator and author, had a career that spanned over 50 years. Wilkin is best known for her Golden Books, working for them for almost 20 years and illustrating over 50 books for Golden, some of which are still in print. Many of her books have become classics. In her career she illustrated well over 100 books!

To read about Eloise Wilkin, Cassandra of Cassandra Considers All Things Bright and Beautiful did a very comprehensive post on the life of Wilkin in 2010 - to view that click here

Eloise's daughter, Deborah Wilkin Springett, wrote a book about her mother's life, called The Golden Years of Eloise Wilkin

Poems to Read to the Very Young
Selected by Josette Frank
Illustrated by Eloise Wilkin
Random House, 1982


Vintage Southwestern Children's Books

No, I didn't get Western boots when I was in New Mexico. Even more sad - I didn't have time to pursue any vintage children's books there. I saw a reproduction of a vintage children's book about a coyote at a museum and now I'm kicking myself for not getting it. I balked at the $12 price tag for a smaller softcover book. It was well drawn by the illustrator whose name I can't remember nor the name of the book. A quick search hasn't yielded results.
But I'll continue looking. 

Meanwhile, I did a search on vintage Southwestern children's books and came up with several images that I hope you will like. I can't guarantee that they are all Southwestern, as I discovered in my search that there is a publishing company called Southwestern, which made my search a little trickier.

image via COLD SPLINTERS, illustration by Peter Parnall

image via smartypants009, illustrations by M.K. Scott

image via Vintage-Books

Taos is a lovely place to visit, they say it is like Santa Fe was 30 years ago. I think Mabel Dodge Luhan was a friend to Georgia O'Keefe. We went to the Georgia O'Keefe Museum in Santa Fe. I think O'Keefe was an interesting and unique person, especially for her time.

image via VintageWoods, illustrated by Maurice Sendak

image via yotman1

image via Ruby Lane

 Illustrated by Arnie Kohn and Robert Meyers

image via bestmediadeal

image via STAG, illustrated by M. Sasek

image via yotman1

image via Imbcorgi


Doors of Taos Pueblo, New Mexico

My husband and I were fortunate to take a trip to the beautiful state of New Mexico. They call it the land of enchantment and now I know why. The desert landscape dotted with yellow wildflowers and purple sage is set against the mountains and the sky is so blue.

On the first leg of our trip we went to Taos. While there we toured the Taos Pueblo, an Indian Reservation that has been inhabited for over 1000 years.
I don't feel good about the situation that the Native American Indians have in our country. But my blog is not the place to make commentary on the situation.

I think Adobe architecture is very interesting (so fitting for the landscape) and it's orange tint could be what makes the sky seem extra blue, though maybe the elevation (7000 ft.) has something to do with it too.

While walking around I was struck by the different doors of each residence and took pictures of them. Even though these are very humble adobe's, there is an artistic sense about them.