Genevieve Foster

Inside my copy of Augustus Caesar's World, I found a clipping written by Genevieve Foster and excerpted from The Junior Book of Authors by Kunitz and Haycraft:

"New York State was my birthplace, but Whitewater, a little town in southern Wisconsin, is the childhood home I remember. My father, who was a teacher of sciences, died in 1894, when I was a year old, and my mother went back to her father's home to live.

"It was an old brick house, the house of my grandfather, four stories high. It stood in the center of a large lawn, surrounded by a picket fence. Grandfather died when I was three and that left only four of us in the big house--my grandmother, my aunt, who was also a widow, but much older than my mother, Mother, and me. Though I was an only child, I never remember being lonely.

"Grandma was a lively little old lady, full of fun, and always ready to play games. She taught me to sew and embroider when I was very small. I loved the beautiful colored silks, and she shared my enthusiasm, but always quietly insisted that I finish the piece I had begun before starting another. That was a hard lesson for me to learn, but one for which I have been grateful.

"'Auntie,' as I called her, was an invalid, and spent much time in her room, with a fascinating green bottle of smelling salts beside her. The winter I was five she was ill for weeks, and I wrote letters to her every day and pushed them under the closed door. Somehow or other, although no one had made any effort to teach me, I had learned to read and write.

"I always liked to draw. That was taken quite as a matter of course by my mother, for there had always been someone painting, drawing, or modeling in our family.

"When I was six I started school. From then on the house and yard were always full of children. One summer three of us who liked to draw had a studio in the top floor. There, also, in an old haircloth armchair, at the age of ten, I started to write the one and only novel I have ever attempted, and of which Chapter One was both the end and the beginning.

"I liked school, probably because I was interested in everything and nothing was ever hard for me to learn or to remember--except history! History confused me. And the more I learned, in high school and in college, the more confused I became.

"I was graduated from the University of Wisconsin. By that time I was eager to go to an art school, for I had had no time to draw during college. I came to Chicago and studied for a year. The director seemed pleased with my work. Encouraged by him, I ventured to start out as a commercial artist, and for several years I did all kinds of drawings for newspapers, booklets, and magazines. The name I signed then was Genevieve Stump. It was interesting work, but I was never entirely satisfied and gave it up when I was married in 1922 to Orrington Foster.

"For the next few years my interest was centered in our home and our two small children, a boy, named for his father but called by the nickname Tony, and a girl, Joanna, four years younger.

"When they were both out of the baby stage, I dusted off my drawing board again, and began making illustrations for children's stories. This was fun, but still I was not entirely satisfied. And one day it finally came to me how I might combine all the things I liked best to do. I would try to find out what I myself had always wanted to know about history, and write a book about it, that children, and perhaps their fathers and mothers too, might like to read."

Mrs. Foster's works:

World Books (mid- to upper elementary):
George Washington's World
Abraham Lincoln's World
Augustus Caesar's World
World of Captain John Smith
World of Columbus & Sons
World of William Penn

Initial biographies (early to mid-elementary):
George Washington
Abraham Lincoln
Andrew Jackson
Theodore Roosevelt

"Year" books (also early to mid-elementary):
Year of Columbus, 1492
Year of Independence, 1776
Year of the Flying Machine, 1903
Year of the Horseless Carriage, 1801
Year of Lincoln, 1861
Year of the Pilgrims,1620

Birthdays of Freedom, 2 volumes

She also illustrated the following (and many more):
Boyhood Adventures of Our Presidents by Frances Cavanah
Children of the White House, by Frances Cavanah
Pioneer Girl, The Early Life of Frances Willard by Clara Ingram Judson
The Strange Pettingill Puzzle, Two Mysteries for Boys and Girls, by Augusta Huiell Seaman

She also wrote:
When and where in Italy, A Passport to Yesterday for Readers and Travelers of Today
Child Care Work with Emotionally Disturbed Children
The World Was Flooded with Light : a Mystical Experience Remembered
(Above book added for completeness. I've never seen the book and doubt I would recommend it! The title being among her repertoire, I am encouraged to read all her books carefully, with discernment!)