Richard Scarry

Richard Scarry

Infobox Writer
name = Richard Scarry

birthdate = birth date|1919|06|05
birthplace = Boston, Massachusetts
deathdate = Death date and age|1994|4|30|1919|06|05
deathplace = Gstaad, Switzerland
occupation = author and illustrator
genre = Children's books
movement =
notableworks= "Best Word Book Ever"
influences =
influenced =
website =

Richard McClure Scarry (June 5 1919 – April 30 1994) - last name pronounced /'scæ ri/, rhyming with "marry" [ [ What Do People Do All Day? - Richard Scarry - Review - So, What DO people Do All day? ] ] - was an enormously popular American children's author and illustrator who published over 300 books with total sales of 300 million worldwide.

Scarry was born in Boston, Massachusetts, where his parents ran a shop. The Scarry family enjoyed a comfortable life even during the time of the Great Depression. Following high school graduation, Scarry enrolled in a business college but soon dropped out, finding it not to his liking. He then studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where he remained until being drafted into the U.S. Army during World War II.

Following the war, Scarry worked for the art departments of various magazines before making a career breakthrough in 1949 with Little Golden Books.


Scarry's most famous series of books was about Busytown. Scarry's characters are almost always anthropomorphic animals. His books have been popular with children throughout the world. Over 100 million copies of his books have been sold, and they've been translated into 30 languages. [ [ Barnes & - Books: Richard Scarry's Best Word Book Ever, by Richard Scarry, Hardcover, Giant Little Golden Book ] ]

While his books are largely populated by common animal species such as cats, rabbits, pigs, and mice, he proved to be quite adept to giving human characteristics to a seemingly endless number of creatures. Beavers, raccoons, hippopotamuses, rhinoceroses, owls, bears, goats, elephants, foxes, gorillas, crocodiles, dogs, wolves, anteaters, hyenas, baboons, chickens, and insects were just some of the other animals to be featured in Scarry's works.

In the 1980s and '90s, many of his "Best Ever" series of books were converted into very popular animated videos, which are still available on DVD and VHS. Some of these animated films include "Richard Scarry's Best Silly Stories and Songs Videos Ever" and "The Busiest Firefighters Ever". The Busytown books were also adapted into an animated series, The Busy World of Richard Scarry, which ran on Nick Jr. from 1993 to 1996. [ [ The Busy World of Richard Scarry - ] ] Busytown was also featured at the Carnegie Science Center from June 13 through September 8, 2002 in an interactive exhibit entitled "Richard Scarry's Busytown." [ Carnegie Magazine ] ]

Titles reprinted in recent years have been significantly condensed from their original versions.

Personal life and family

Scarry's wife, Patricia Murphy, was a writer of children's textbooks who met Richard during collaboration when he was a textbook illustrator. She is credited with writing many of the stories in his subsequent children's books, such as "Good Night, Little Bear", "The Bunny Book", and "The Fishing Cat".

In 1972, Scarry bought a chalet in Gstaad, Switzerland. Here he founded his studio where he spent most of the day (from about 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.) writing and illustrating his books. His studio contained a single desk, lamp and chair. His wife was told not to bother him except for his hour break for lunch.

Scarry died of a heart attack in Gstaad at age 74 in 1994 [ [|New York Times obituary of Richard Scarry] ] .

His son, Richard Scarry Jr., is also an illustrator, sometimes working under his nickname, Huck Scarry, sometimes working in his father's style as "Richard Scarry". Huck is the nickname of Huckle Cat, one of the most commonly recurring Busytown characters.

Huck lives in Vienna, Austria; socialite Olympia Scarry is his daughter.


*"Best Word Book Ever" (ISBN 0-307-15510-2)
*"Best Bedtime Book Ever"
*"Busy, Busy World" (ISBN 0-307-65539-3)
*"Busy, Busy Town" (ISBN 0-307-16803-4)
*"Cars and Trucks and Things That Go" (ISBN 0-307-15785-7)
*"Please and Thank You Book" (ISBN 0-394-82681-7)
*"Silly Stories"'
*"Tinker and Tanker" (ISBN 0-385-06010-6)
*"What Do People Do All Day?" (ISBN 0-394-81823-7)Beginner Books by Richard Scarry:
*"Richard Scarry's The Best Mistake Ever! and Other Stories" B-Extra 9
*"Pie Rats" B-Extra 10Bright and Early Books by Richard Scarry:
*"The Early Bird" BE-Extra 1


External links

* [ Books and Writers: Richard Scarry (1919-1994)]
* [ "The Best Word Book Ever", 1963 and 1991] ; a comparison of changes (though these were also present in the First Revised Edition, published in 1980)
* [ Online bio of Richard Scarry - with pictures]
* [ The Busy World of Richard Scarry (TV program)]

NAME=Scarry, Richard McClure
SHORT DESCRIPTION=author and illustrator
DATE OF BIRTH=June 5 1919
PLACE OF BIRTH=Boston, Massachusetts, United States
DATE OF DEATH=April 30 1994

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  • Richard McClure Scarry — [ˈskæri] (* 5. Juni 1919 in Boston, Massachusetts; † 30. April 1994), war ein Kinderbuchautor und Illustrator, der über 300 Bücher veröffentlicht hat, wovon über 300 Million Stück weltweit verkauft wurden. Er wurde in Boston geboren, wo seine… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Scarry — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Mike Scarry (* 1920), US amerikanischer American Football Spieler und Trainer Richard Scarry (1919 1994), US amerikanischer Kinderbuchautor Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Scarry, Richard McClure — ▪ 1995       U.S. author and illustrator (b. June 5, 1919, Boston, Mass. d. April 30, 1994, Gstaad, Switz.), captured the imagination of preschoolers with his oversized, highly detailed picture books, which featured a whimsical menagerie of… …   Universalium

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