When the Los Angeles Public Library opened in 1927, there were no such things as Saturday morning cartoons, animation was still in its infancy, and books introduced children to all of the discoveries that the world had to offer. From the simplest of Mother Goose nursery rhymes, to stories of adventure, and mythology.
The subjects that fill the Children’s Court were chosen by Hartley Burr Alexander, a Nebraska-
Please enjoy these images. How many Los Angelenos are even aware of these amazing images that have been tucked away inside of the library for nearly nine decades.
Please be sure to share this page with anyone who has children and make sure that they read about all of the characters and stories that Professor Alexander wanted children to wonder about. Through these stories, we come to understand what he meant by “THE WORLD IS MY BOOK.”
IF YOU LIVE IN L.A., PLEASE TAKE YOUR CHILDREN TO SEE THESE MAGNIFICENT WORKS!
The Children’s Court was intended to be an outdoor reading room for children. When the library was built, there was generally no air conditioning, so outdoors provided the perfect environment for kids to sit outside on sunny days and escape into literature, opening their minds to the world beyond the library.
Lawrie created these sculptural details and panels to communicate their ideas to kids, and everyone really. The frieze over the door features Proteus and Galatea, the California Bear, a Chinese Junk, an Octopus, a Clipper Ship, and the Globe.
There are Carytids, or female-
Among the children’s stories and mythological elements Lawrie designed into these artistic subjects are Romulus and Remus from the founding of Rome, Apollo, Pegasus, Tales of the Arabian Nights, Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, Alice in Wonderland, Robin Hood, Mother Goose, including The Cat and the Fiddle, Tom, Tom the Piper’s Son, St. George and the Dragon and King Arthur drawing the Sword from the Stone.
For a gigapan, a HUGE, ZOOM-
Hover over the Galleries tab to see more pictures.
The sitemap lets you easily see ALL of what’s here.
|Columbia at the Washington, D.C., Municipal Building|
|The Purpose of Sculpture|
|Lee Lawrie With His Cats|
|Moden Mural Sculpture by Lee Lawrie|
|How Ancient Mural Sculpture Differs|
|Sculpture is Not Simply " Decoration"|
|Ensuring Sculpture is Appropriate to the Building|
|The Need for Simplicity in Mural Sculpture|
|Discobolus and Hermes|
|The Future of Sculpture: As Seen From 1934...|
|Partial List of Lawrie's Major Commissions|
|Timeline of Lawrie's Career and Works|
|Pasadena Memorial Flagstaff|
|Louisiana State Capitol|
|Rockefeller Center Works|
|State St. Bridge, Harrisburg, PA|
|Pennsylvania Monument, Finance Building|
|Lawrie's Visions of Bison|
|Los Angleles Public Library, Children's Court|
|Soldiers and Sailors Sketch?|
|Harrisburg Eagles, 1|
|Harrisburg Eagles, 2|
|Panorama of the flagstaff|
|Forum Building Doors at Harrisburg|
|Education Building Doors Harrisburg in Color|
|Forum Building Doors at Harrisburg in Color|
|Miner, Teacher, Lineman|
|Draftsman, Mason and More|
|Benjamin Franklin, Archimedes and More|
|Thoth, Heracles and More|
|Wisdom at the Rockefeller Center|
|Lineman and Lathe Operator|
|War Memorial at St. Thomas Church, NYC.|
|World War Memorial by Lee Lawrie|
|World War Memorial by Lee Lawrie|
|Louisiana State Capitol Pelicans|
|Bison on the Balustrade|
|Layout of the Bison on the Balustrade|
|Eduardo "Eddie" Ardolino|
|New Nebraska State Capitol Postcard|
|Indian Doors, Nebraska State Capitol|
|Indian Doors, Keats Lorenz|
|Indian Doors, Details|
|Philosopher and the Thinker|
|The Greats of Civilization|
|Civilization and the Sphinxes|
|Dr. Hartley Burr Alexander|
|Tombstone of Reverend Alexander|
|UN-L Article 2012 p.1|
|UN-L Article 2012 p.2|