Field, Rachel (1894 - 1942)

Genre: Children's Literature, Drama/Theatre/Film, General Fiction

Rachel Field was born in New York City, grew up in western Mass., and summered as an adult on Sutton's Island, one of the Cranberry Isles off of Mount Desert. Although she died in her 40s, she was a prolific writer of children's and adult books, and she was the first woman to win the Newbery Medal, for Hitty: Her First Hundred Years (1929). A sequel to Hitty, titled Rachel Field's Hitty: Her First Hundred Years with New Adventures, was written by Rosemary Wells and illustrated by Susan Jeffers (1999). A Memorial Horn Book for Rachel Field was published in 1942. She was also featured in Down East Today (1938; Virginia Smith Hall), along with Mary Ellen Chase, Gladys Hasty Carroll, and Robert P. Tristram Coffin.

Selected Bibliography

Books for Children

  • The Pointed People (1924/1930; verses)
  • Taxis and Toadstools (1926; verses)
  • An Alphabet for Boys and Girls (1926)
  • Eliza and the Elves (1926; illustrated by Elizabeth MacKinstry)
  • General Store (1926/1988; in verse; illustrated by Giles Laroche)
  • General Store (1926/1988; in verse; illustrated by Nancy Winslow Parker)
  • If Once You Have Slept on an Island (1926/1933/1993/1995; illustrated by Iris Van Rynbach)
  • A Little Book of Days (1927; verse)
  • Little Dog Toby (1928)
  • Hitty: Her First Hundred Years (1929) experiences of a wooden doll; Newbery winner 1930; illustrated by Dorothy Lathrop)
  • Calico Bush (1931) Maine girl in 1743; wood engravings by Allen Lewis
  • Hepatica Hawks (1932; wood engravings by Allen Lewis)
  • The Bird Began To Sing (1932; illustrated by Ilse Bischoff)
  • Just Across the Street (1933)
  • Susanna B. and William C. (1934)
  • All Through the Night (1940/1955 edition illustrated by Shirley Hughes)
  • Prayer for a Child (1944/1984; illustrated by Elizabeth Orton Jones; won Caldecott Medal in 1945)
  • The Rachel Field Story Book (1958; illustrated by Adrienne Adams)
  • A Road Might Lead to Anywhere (1990; illustrated by Giles Laroche)

Books for Adults

  • Points East, Narratives of New England (1930/1933; in verse)
  • Branches Green (1934; illustrated by Dorothy Lathrop; poems)
  • God's Pocket: The Story of Captain Samuel Hadlock, Junior, of Cranberry Isles, Maine (1934/1999)
  • Time Out of Mind (1935/1938; fiction; four generations of shipbuilding family in Maine)
  • Fear is the Thorn (1936; poems)
  • To See Ourselves (1937; co-authored with Arthur Pederson; fiction)
  • All This and Heaven Too (1938/2003; Charles Boyer starred in the movie): Fictional combining of one of the most notorious murder cases in France with a period of American history covering New England and New York 1850 to 1875.
  • Christmas Time (1941; poems)
  • And Now Tomorrow (1942/1967): A young woman must reevaluate her relationships after an illness leaves her deaf.


  • Plays of the 47 Workshop (1918/1923; includes "Three Pills in a Bottle")
  • Six Plays (1924/1927; for high-school-aged children): 'Cinderella Married,' 'Three Pills in a Bottle,' 'Columbine in Business,' 'The Patchwork Quilt,' 'Wisdom Teeth,' and 'Theories and Thumbs.'
  • The Atlantic Book of Junior Plays (1924; with Thomas Charles Swain)
  • The Cross-Stitch Heart and other plays (1927/1928): 'Greasy Luck,' 'The Nine Days' Queen,' 'The Londonderry Air,' 'Bargains in Cathay: A Comedy in One Act,' and 'At the Junction: A Fantasy for Railroad-Stations in One Act.'
  • Patchwork Plays (1930; juvenile): 'Polly Patchwork: A Comedy in Three Scenes,' 'Little Square-Toes,' 'Miss Ant, Miss Grasshopper and Mr. Cricket,' 'Chimney-Sweeps' Holiday,' and 'The Sentimental Scarecrow.'


  • The Magic Pawn Shop; a New Year's Eve Fantasy (1927; illustrated by Elizabeth MacKinstry)
  • The White Cat, and other old French fairy tales by Mme. La Comtesse d'Aulney (1928/1967; arranged by Field)
  • American Folk and Fairy Tales (1929; selected by Rachel Field; illustrated by Margaret Freeman)
  • People from Dickens: A Presentation of Leading Characters from the Books of Charles Dickens (1935; illustrated by Thomas Fogarty)
  • Sung under the Silver Umbrella: Poems for Young Children (1935; includes poems for children by Field, Elizabeth Coatsworth, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Laura E. Howe Richards; illustrated by Dorothy Lathrop)
  • Ave Maria; an interpretation from Walt Disney's 'Fantasia' (1940; lyric by Rachel Field)
  • Christmas: A Book of Stories Old and New (1950; selected by Alice Dalgliesh; includes stories by Field and Celia Thaxter; illustrated by Hildegard Woodward)

Selected Resources