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Ludwig Bemelmans (1898-1962)
Madeline in America
Fall 1999


"Her great-grandpapa, in bad health,
Had left her all his earthly wealth.
To Dallas Madeline would be sent
For the reading of the last will and testament."

Children and adults who are accustomed to seeing Madeline in her school uniform will be delighted to watch Madeline and her band of 11 adorn ten-gallon hats, shop in the world greatest store and ride horseback. Meet the lawyer named Crockett; visit the landmarks of Texas, and for the first time learn Madeline's last name.

This collection contains "Madeline in America" and two other holiday classics; "The Count and the Cobbler" and "Sunshine".

Excerpts from the Preface of "Madeline in America" by John Bemelmans Marciano

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"In an old house in Paris / that was covered with vines /lived twelve little girls in two straight lines," begins Ludwig Bemelmans's beloved 1939 classic "Madeline."

For over 50 years, Madeline's adventures have enthralled her ever-growing audience. The original Madeline was named a Caldecott Honor Book, and the first of its five sequels, Madeline's Rescue, received a Caldecott Medal. Now, for the first time ever, all six Madeline books are collected in one handsome volume.

Madeline in London

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Pepito has moved to England. To help celebrate his birthday, Miss Clavel and the girls pay him a visit. When his mother won't let Pepito keep one of his birthday presents--a horse--Madeline is more than willing to help out.

Original Sketches from this book.  Click on Picture for enlargement.

Special Treat - Madeline Online

Note: Bemelmans once wrote to an editor that he had a line ready to be incised on his tombstone: "Tell Them It Was Wonderful" which is also the title of a book- collection of loosely autobiographical stories written by Robert Wernick.

Activities: Downloadable Patterns for MADELINE'S MOBILE, PUPPETS, and more.

Excerpts from the Preface of "Madeline in America" by John Bemelmans Marciano

"'Madeline in America,' began life as 'Madeline's Christmas in Texas. During a trip through Texas in the early 1950's my grandfather met and befriended Stanley Marcus of Neiman Marcus. Also on that trip he went to the legendary King Ranch, the size of which exceeds that of some states.

"My grandfather came up with the idea of Madeline's spending a Christmas in Texas. He wrote and made sketches for a full-length book. But the idea was abandoned in favor of a different Christmas idea (which, unfortunately, was also never fully realized). In keeping with the feel of the other Madeilne books, I traveled to Texas and painted the sights that now serve as background. (A list of them appears on page 111.)

"The Count and the Cobbler" first appeared as a two page comic-strip-style spread in the 1935 Christmas issue of Harper's Bazaar, my grandfather's first major magazine publication…

"My grandfather originally wrote "Sunshine" as a treatment for a musical-comedy vehicle for Frank Sinatra. But it soon took shape as a book in the spirit of Madeline-complete with a benevolent female overseer and the use of a city as a central charter.

"I tried not to slavishly copy details and create a Bemelmans pastiche, but to see through my grandfather's eyes. I hope I did him justice"
-John Bemelmans Marciano