Many exceptional female authors have captured children’s imaginations through their children’s books. The books of Louisa May Alcott, Kate Douglass Wiggin, and Laura Ingles Wilder have not only sparked the imagination but have also fostered a love of reading for several generations of American children.
Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) is most known for her novel, Little Women, written in 1868. The novel documents the March sisters growing up during the Civil War era and is largely autobiographical of Alcott’s own experiences growing up in an impoverished family. After Little Women, Alcott wrote two sequels, Little Men: Life at Plumfield with Jo's Boys and Jo's Boys, and How They Turned Out. In addition to writing, she was also part of the suffragist and temperance movements. Since her death, Alcott has remained an American literary icon.
Kate Douglass Wiggin (1856-1923) was a teacher and a kindergarten movement activist. In 1883 she began to publish children’s books for an additional income, but eventually started to write full time. Her most famous work is Rebecca at Sunnybrook Farm which she published in 1903, and later adapted into a Broadway play. The story tells the tale of an energetic young girl growing up on a farm with her two aunts.
Laura Ingles Wilder (1867-1957) was born in rural Pepin, Wisconsin. Growing up within a pioneer family herself, she later went on to write the iconic Little House children’s series that told stories about a family living a pioneer life on the frontier. She started writing the series when she was sixty five years old, and published her first book, Little House in the Big Woods, in 1932. Wilder continued to write until her death and her works remain popular amongst children today.
These three women’s stamps were designed by Jim Lamb and were issued in Louisville, Kentucky, for the Classic Book Stamps series.