The Caldecott medal is presented annually to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children. It is awarded by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
The Award is restricted to artists who are citizens or residents of the United States.
The Caldecott Medal was named in honor of nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph Caldecott.
Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886) is often called the “father of the picture book”.
The award was first given in 1938 to Dorothy P. Lathrop for Animals of the Bible, with text selected by Helen Dean Fish from the King James Bible.
Two artists have won the medal three times: Marcia Brown (1955-Cinderella, or, the Little Glass Slipper, 1962-Once a Mouse, 1983-Shadow) and David Wiesner (1992-Tuesday, 2002-The Three Pigs, 2007-Flotsam).
Six artists have won the medal two times: Barbara Cooney, Leo and Diane Dillon, Nonny Hogrogian, Robert McCloskey, Chris Raschka and Chris Van Allsburg.
Five married couples have won the award together: Ingri and Edgar Parin d’Aulaire, Leo and Diane Dillon, Berta and Elmer Hader, Maud and Miska Petersham, and Alice and Martin Provensen.
Both Leonard Weisgard and Jon Klassen won the award and had an honor book in the same year. In 1947 Weisgard won for The Little Island and received an honor award for Little Lost Lamb. In 2013 Klassen won for This Is Not My Hat and received an honor award for Extra Yarn.
Maurice Sendak won the award in 1964 for Where the Wild Things Are and has the most honor books (7).
Dr. Seuss has never won the Caldecott. He has three honor titles: 1948 (McElligot’s Pool), 1950 (Bartholomew and the Oobleck), and 1951 (If I Ran the Zoo).
Alliance, Ohio artist Brinton Cassaday Turkle had a Caldecott Honor book in 1970 for Thy Friend, Obadiah.
Two Caldecott winners were born in Ohio – Evaline Ness (Union City, Ohio) and Robert McCloskey (Hamilton, Ohio).
Erin Stead was the youngest winner (age 28) and Mordicai Gerstein was the oldest winner (age 69)
1970 winner William Steig was the creator of Shrek.
2000 winner Simms Taback created the art for the first McDonald’s Happy Meal box, circa 1977.
2008 winner, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, written and illustrated by Brian Selznick, is the longest (533 pages and 284 pictures).