The Librarian Lion: Constructing Children's Literature through Connections, Capital, and Criticism (1906-1941)

Publication Title

Journal of Education for Library and Information Science

Publication Date


Document Type



children's librarianship


Library and Information Science


While much has been written about the pioneering children's librarian Anne Carroll Moore, little has been written about her role as a de facto literary agent. As such, Moore was an innovator not only in children's Iibrarianship, but also in the field of children's publishing. This paper analyzes Moore's letters at the Manuscripts and Archives Division of the New York Public Library and uncovers evidence of her agenting role. Letters written to Moore from authors and illustrators like Greville Macdonald, Walter de la Mare, Leonard Leslie Brooke, Dorothy Lathrop, Florence Crannell Means, and Beatrix Potter demonstrate Moore's involvement-from previewing manuscripts, to placing them with editors, to reviewing finished books, and finally, to selecting works for the library's children. Moore's innovative mentoring work with authors defines her as a leader whose reach stretched from the library to the world of publishing, as she helped shape the burgeoning genre of children's literature.