March 17th is widely celebrated as St. Patrick’s Day but it also happens to be the birthday of notable childrens’ book illustrator Kate Greenaway. Born in London in 1846, she studied art at various schools, such as the Heatherley School of Fine Art, and began her career in watercolors and cards. She was a contemporary or Walter Crane and Randolph Caldecott and good friend to Victorian art critic John Ruskin.
This sweet group of pocket-sized almanacs by British children's book illustrator Kate Greenaway (1846-1901) were issued between 1884 and 1895. Greenaway's scenes of beautifully-dressed children frolicking in the countryside were popular during the late Victorian period, and her images still exert a strong nostalgic charm. These books also display the talents of Edmund Evans, one of the finest engravers and color printers of the 19th century. This collection of Greenaway's almanacs is housed in the Bradley Room of the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum Library.—Diane Shaw