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Ludwig Bemelmans - Click to see all titles by this author.

Lively - Living life active and full of wonder, with courage and determination.

Ludwig Bemelmans’ birthday is on April 27th.

“In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines. They left the house, at half past nine… The smallest one was Madeline.”

Ludwig Bemelmans was born in Austria in 1898. He was an artist, writer, humorist, muralist, and screenwriter. He made regular contributions to The New Yorker, Holiday, Town & Country, and Vogue magazines. The Metropolitan Museum in New York, and the Musée National d’Art of Paris display his magnificent art.

Ludwig moved to the United States when he was 16 years old and worked in the hotel industry. During World War I he enlisted in the U.S. Army. In 1918 he became a U.S. citizen, restaurateur, and an accomplished artist. May Massee, a children’s book editor for Viking Press, suggested he write books.

A bicycle accident that landed Ludwig in the hospital produced a lively meeting with a little girl who, just had her appendix out. The inspiration for the character Madeline Fogg was born. He named her after his wife, Madeline Freund and endowed her with his own eccentric and spunky characteristics along with their daughter, Barbara’s personality. Some of the story lines are derived from his mother’s stories about her life as a little girl in a convent school.

Madeline celebrated her 75th Anniversary in 2014 and inspired eight sequels, dolls, games, tea sets, lunch boxes, backpacks, television shows and movies. She is loved by millions of readers, young and old, all over the world. Madeline’s Rescue, won the Caldecott Medal in 1954 and Madeline was named a Caldecott Honor Book in 1940.

Ludwig’s grandson, John Bemelmans Marchiano found unfinished Madeline manuscripts and published them. He has also written and illustrated many books based upon Madeline, such as: Madeline And The Cats, Madeline At The White House, and Madeline And The Old House In Paris.

Ludwig Bemelmans died on October 1, 1962 and is buried Arlington National Cemetery.

“That’s all there is, there isn’t anymore.” – from Madeline.

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