The Origins of Cricket Magazine

In 1973, Open Court Publishing Company launched Cricket, the magazine for children. A literary magazine for children, Cricket was the brainchild of Marianne Carus, who had worked with her husband Blouke, head of Open Court, to improve reading and math textbooks for school children.

Designed to stimulate curiosity, imagination, and a sense of wonder about history, art, science, and world cultures, Cricket featured new stories and adaptations written by celebrated authors and interpreted by award winning illustrators. In addition to daring illustrator Trina Schart Hyman, and respected literary editor Clifton Fadiman, Newbery Medal winning children’s author Lloyd Alexander was a major contributor to the magazine’s development and content, often sharing wisdom in the guise of “Old Cricket”.

Preserved in more than 600 boxes, the Cricket Media Records collection at Morris Library's Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) documents business development and operations from 1971 to 2006, including a large volume of original edited manuscripts and correspondence from authors, illustrators, and other professionals in children's publishing. The collection features most issues of the original magazine and later titles from 1973 to 2018, and an oral history interview with Marianne and Blouke Carus, conducted May 29, 2018.


Anne Marie Hamilton-Brehm, Ph.D.