Most everyone who grew up in the 1950s and 1960s will recall reading The Golden Name Day, The Crystal Tree, and The Little Silver House. Teachers and librarians read the “Horn Book Magazine”. The name Jennie D. Lindquist was also familiar, almost as familiar as her characters, Nancy, Sigrid, Elsa and Helga.
The Golden Name Day received the Newbery Honor Book award in 1956. The award is given by the American Library Association for the most distinguished American children’s book published the previous year.
Jennie became the assistant children’s librarian at UNH and at the Albany New York Public Library. She was on the staff of the “Horn Book”, a publication about children’s books, from 1948 to 1958 and served as editor from 1951 to 1958.
But how many of us knew that Jennie was a Manchester native? She was born Jennie Dorothea Lindquist here in March 1899, the daughter of Swedish immigrants and graduated from Manchester High School. She later studied at the University of New Hampshire and Simmons School of Library Science in Boston.
Miss Lindquist, as she would have been called, began her library career as a page at the Manchester City Library in 1922. She was granted leave for her education and returned to become the assistant in the children’s department before resigning in 1943. She left for New York, but later returned to Manchester where she died in 1977. She is buried in Manchester’s Pine Grove Cemetery.
On the main floor of the library, there is a photo of the Manchester City Library Staff in 1934 on the lower left corner of the display wall. In the second row, the fifth person from the left is Jennie Lindquist.
As you walk through this beautiful building, imagine all the famous people who have worked, visited, or checked out a book from this library in the past hundred years!
Cynthia N. O’Neil 6/2013