Who authored Australia's first published children's book?
For almost 140 years, the author of Australia’s first book for children, A Mother's Offering to Her Children, was a mystery. Known only by the description ‘a Lady Long Resident in New South Wales’, she was the subject of much speculation. It was not until 1980, after a decade of sleuthing, that legendary bibliographer Marcie Muir gave her a name: Charlotte Waring Atkinson.
This pioneering author was most recently the subject of a book, Searching for Charlotte, written by her descendants Kate Forsyth and Belinda Murrell, who are also children's authors.
A copy of A Mother's Offering to Her Children from 1841 is held in the collections of the National Library of Australia.