thank you margaret wise brown.

I feel so lucky to have a nearly complete collection of Margaret Wise Brown’s books. If she had lived, there would be hundred’s more I’m sure. The list of works published in her lifetime are those printed by Leonard S. Marcus in his biography Margaret Wise Brown : Awakened by the Moon, published by Beacon Press, 1992. Available here

Margaret was incredibly prolific. One of the reasons she had pseudonyms was that she had so many books ready to publish at the same time – she used different names in order to not “flood” the market. When Margaret died unexpectedly at the age of 42, she left a bunch of unpublished manuscripts – Leonard S. Marcus said it best in his biography of Margaret Wise Brown.

“Immense caches of unpublished manuscripts, in varying states of completion and of widely quality, were found at Cobble Court, 186 East End Ave, and the Only House. It became the large and laborious task of Roberta Rauch and Bruce Bliven Jr. to determine the copyright status of each of these works and decide which of them might be publishable. It was agreed at the onset that publishers should not permitted to revise the manuscripts in any appreciable way, that it was preferable to forego publication rather than allow a book to appear in a form that Margaret herself might not have sanctioned. Even with this commendable restriction in force, more than twenty books were issued posthumously.”


In 1999 I created a website archiving my collection. I took it down in 2019 after 20 years because the software I was used to became obsolete on the server, so I’ve moved it to wordpress.

The majority of the photos I will add here are of my personal collection. Some are from friends that also own first editions (Thanks JeNeal & Laurel & Russell) And Finally – Thank you to Laurel & Rose, for so generously sharing with me your personal memories of your mom Dorothy Wagstaff ( Dorothy illustrated MWB’s book Horses )and her friendship with Margaret. Enjoy and thanks for stopping by. – Bev Dittberner, 2022

Margaret and her good friend “Wag” illustrated Margaret’s books. Thank you for the photo Laurel Ripley Galloway.

Brief Biography

  • Born: May 23, 1910 Place: Greenpoint Brooklyn, New York-
  • Died: November 13, 1952 (42 years old) in Nice, France from an embolism following a minor operation
  • Father:  Robert Bruce Brown, was Vice President of the American Manufacturing Company. 
  • Mother: Maude Johnson Brown, was from Virginia.Siblings:  
  • Brother (2 years older), Benjamin Gratz, Jr.(named after his paternal grandfather)
  • Sister (2 years younger), Roberta Brown Rauch 

Pets:Margaret said “I had thirty-six rabbits, two squirrels–one bit me and dropped dead–a collie dog, two Peruvian guinea pigs, a Belgian hare, andseven fish and a wild robin who came back every spring.” When Margaret was an adult she had a Kerry Blue Terrier named Crispin’s Crispian.

The dog in Mister Dog was named Crispin’s Crispian.


  • 1923: Lausanne, Switzerland, 
  • 1926: Dana Hall in Wellesley, Mass. 
  • 1928: Entered Hollins College, Virginia    Work:
  • 1935: Bank Street Cooperative School for student teachers.
  • 1937: Began her writing career with the publication of When the Wind Blew.
  • 1937 – 1952  Published over 100 picture books for children.

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