Thursday, September 30, 2010

Growing My Dream

I think the part I liked most about this blog is the inter-team work we create.  As avid lovers and readers of John D. Fitzgeralds works we really team up to bring these back to the populace.  Every idea fuels me.  Todays reader input comes from Sandy.  She wrote
I was researching books for my book club assignment, and came across this page: .  I especially like the query at the top about why the heck books in the middle of the series are out of print, and that he is also a huge fan of Great Brain books!

I went to the link.  It's a great piece.  I then wrote the author and asked if I could post it.  He gave me permission.  I hope enjoy it.

Monday, September 27, 2010

School Projects

What is school without projects.  Over the years many various Great Brain, John D. Fitzgerald projects have been carried out.  The most recent one I heard of was from fifth grader named Trent Bakow.  He completed a book report on The Great Brain.  He did such a wonderful job that his teacher asked to keep it to hang in the classroom.  I'm sure that put a smile on Mr. Fitzgeralds face.

The next project was written in the early eighty's by a young man named Ryan Madsen.  His submission was presented at the Utah State History Fair.  At the time he was a middle school student.  He opened his piece with these words
My brothers and I have grown up with the books written by John D. Fitzgerald:  These books took place eighty years ago, and yet my brothers and I began to feel as if we were the three Fitzgerald boys in the books. My brother Troy knew he was "The Great Brain" when the elementary school talked about double-promoting him; I was John.  John D. Fitzgerald has had an influence on every young boy who read his books.
A few years after Ryan's project an entire school immersed themselves in Fitzgerald's work.  They created one of the most amazing projects and field trips I've ever heard of.  Next week I will share their work with you.

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Published Historian Drops By

This blog may have a small following, but it has some of the neatest visitors/followers.  Last week a new visitor dropped by.  His name is Reid Nielson.  I don't believe he is any relation to Mamma's family.  He is however an avid Fitzgerald fan and historian.  He works for the LDS (Mormon) History department.  Through his connections he delivered an address in 2007 entitled Separating Fact from Fiction:  The Life and Writings of  Children's Author John D. Fitzgerald.  

He was kind enough to drop me an email and compliment the blog.  I have emailed him to see if I can have a copy of his address.  If he gives permission I will share it with everyone.

If you have any interest in his other works you can check them out at

Mr. Nielson, thanks for dropping by.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What's In a Name

There was a time in American history when nicknames became a persons given names.  My grandmother and her sisters were born in the early 1900's.  They each had beautiful given names but somewhere in their teens or earlier they began calling themselves by their nicknames, Mickey, Collie (pronounced Coalie), and Ce.  If I recall right they had taken these names from famous silent film stars.  By the time I knew these women I knew them only by those names.  

My progenitors shared this moniker issue with many of the early Americans.  Among those early Americans were the Fitzgeralds.  Only two of them, to my understanding, had nicknames Papa and John.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

School Days

September is in full swing which means back to school.  I thought you might enjoy seeing some photos from the Fitzgerald kids school days.  Enjoy the haircuts, the clothes, even the faces.

The Great Brain

Gerald Fitzgerald

Walter Kay (Family Friend)

1924 Sophomore Class of Carbon High

*Note:  You may remember the Kay family from the infamous "mumps" experience.  Howard Kay was listed by name, but I forgot to locate a picture.