The Caldecott Medal, established in 1937 by the American Library Association, is awarded each year to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children. While many people are familiar with this prestigious award, relatively few are acquainted with the English illustrator after whom it was named. Randolph Caldecott was one of the most popular book illustrators of the late nineteenth century. His picture books were issued two at a time every Christmas, from 1878 until his death in 1886. He chose the subjects on his own, drawing from a mix of age-old nursery rhymes, pieces by eighteenth-century writers, and nonsense he made up himself. With their humorous wordplay and exquisite illustrations, Caldecott's picture books continue to engage the imaginations of children and adults alike. This new edition reproduces nine of his most popular stories: "The House that Jack Built", "The Diverting History of John Gilpin", "Sing a Song for Sixpence", "The Three Jovial Huntsmen", "The Farmer's Boy", "The Queen of Hearts", "The Milkmaid", "Hey Diddle Diddle", and "Baby Bunting".
This book is the third in the series of "Huntington Library Children's Classics", which include facsimiles of favorite children's books from the Huntington's rare book collections.