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Children's Studies

A research guide to resources for children's studies at Washington University Libraries and on the Web.

University Libraries' Collections

The Henrietta Hochschild Collection of Children's Books

The Henrietta Hochschild Collection of Children's Books, located in Olin Library Special Collections, numbers over 1,000 books, magazines, and ephemeral pieces documenting the evolution of children's literature.  Among the items in the collection are a Buck Rogers illustrated pop-up edition, several works by the 19th-century creator of movable picture books, Lothar Meggendorfer, and a stunning advance copy of Maxfield Parrish's Knave of Hearts, published in 1925.  Learn more.

Little Black Sambo Collection

The Story of Little Black Sambo was written and illustrated by Helen Bannerman, a Scotswoman living in colonial India. Washington University Libraries' Department of Special Collections acquired a wide-ranging collection of nearly 300 primary sources that document this text, its publishing and illustration history, and its treatment in the mass market.  It is the story of a little Indian boy who goes out into the world with a new suit of clothes. After losing everything to ravenous tigers, he gets his belongings back when the tigers, in a fit of jealousy, chase themselves around a tree until they melt into butter.

With its racially charged title and succession of editions reset in Africa or the American South, the work has been controversial since it first appeared in 1899. Over the course of its 100-year history, discussion of the work has stimulated a more enlightened development and re-evaluation of children's books featuring non-white protagonists. Learn more.

Gellman's Children's Literature Collection

Children's literature, purchased in honor of Vivian Gellman. View a list of titles in the collection: Gellman, Vivian - Honoree. Located in Olin Library, Level A, shelved by call number, which are mostly in the PZ's.

Toy Collection

In 2012, the Center for the Humanities donated to the Washington University Libraries a small collection of toys it had assembled in support of the Children's Studies Minor and various special projects/grants related to Children's Studies. This toy collection is currently stored in the East Asian Library's seminar room, where individual items are available to researchers or small classes during that library's regular working hours. The primarily American collection includes a number of board games and dolls, including controversial ones like Ghettopoly and Anti-Monopoly as well as disturbing racist and sexist dolls. Many of these dolls also have social or nostalgic significance, such as Wonder Woman Barbie or the Happy Family Grandma Doll. Vintage toys compose a large portion of the collection, including antique science sets and robots, and there is also a significant cluster of politically oriented toys and dolls.

Curriculum Collection

The Curriculum Collection is housed in the general collection of Olin Library. The collection supports the teaching and research needs of faculty, graduates and undergraduates in the Department of Education. The collection contains a variety of textbooks in history, social studies, language arts, reading, algebra, biology and chemistry, to name a few, that are used in elementary and secondary curriculums. There are also various teacher's guides and manuals, learning kits and manipulative materials, and a wide range of children's literature. To locate materials within the Curriculum Collection, use the phrase "curriculum collection" as part of your search in the online catalog.