About us

Illustration from "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" drawn by John Tenniel.

The Society

The society which is based in Wellington, New Zealand is associated with The National Library of New Zealand . It was formed in 1983 to support the work of the Dorothy Neal White Collection.
In 2005 it was extended to support the National Children’s and Susan Price Collections.
How to view the collections supported by Friends of DNW
Membership is by annual subscription, the details are on the membership page.
Address: Friends of the Dorothy Neal White Collection
P. 0. Box 12 499
WELLINGTON


We are sorry to hear of the death of Derek Gordon, the storyteller Bringwonder, who entertained the Friends in August 2013 with his Celtic tales.

https://dnwfriends.nzl.org/index.php/2015/05/30/nba-48-december-2013/


See http://www.thesapling.co.nz for ideas and conversations about children’s books
Winners of the 2018 Hans Christian Andersen Award Joy Cowley short-listed but not the winner


Applying for DNW Scholarship

Through its lectures, meetings, research grant and publications the Society helps to foster interest in the general development of children’s literature. Applications close 31 October 2018.
Interested? Download the application form.


In the Friends’ Display Case: National Library Wellington

I is for Ibis – Alphabet books from Dorothy Neal White CollectionAlbumsI is for Ibis – Alphabet books from Dorothy Neal White Collection
11 photos · Updated 9 days ago
Educational tools which introduce children to the letters of the alphabet and the basics of reading have been used for hundreds of years. Hornbooks, recognised as the earliest means of teaching the alphabet, were in use from the 16th to the 18th century. They were made of a flat piece of wood with a handle, and a printed sheet showing the alphabet was attached to the wood and covered with a protective layer of horn. The mid-18th century saw the introduction of the battledore, a small, folded card which showed the letters of the alphabet and was often illustrated with woodcuts. Some battledores also featured a syllabary (a table or list of syllables) or a short rhyme. In the early 19th century, alphabet books as we recognise them today began to be published more frequently. These generally took the form of short primers showing the alphabet, syllables and simple words, together with a Bible text or story with a moral message. With the development of colour printing technology in the later 19th century, alphabet books became more common, and the illustrations more detailed. Pictures were generally familiar objects from daily life and moral themes were much less prevalent. This era also marked the beginning of the trend which continues today, whereby the primary purpose of many alphabet books is not to teach the alphabet as such, but rather to amuse the reader who already knows their alphabet by combining the letters with illustrations and an accompanying text that may be single words, rhymes, or a story.
Mary Skarott, Children’s Literature Librarian

Pictures, left to right, top to bottom:

R: Lear, Edward. First publication of this Lear alphabet ABC. (New York : McGraw-Hill ; London : Constable Young Books) 1965
The first publication of a newly discovered nonsense alphabet manuscript by Edward Lear, in which the drawings and verses differ markedly from those in other Lear alphabets.
T: Field, Rachel. An alphabet for boys and girls. (New York : Doubleday, Doran & Co.) 1939
Q: Lear, Edward. First publication of this Lear alphabet ABC. (New York : McGraw-Hill ; London : Constable Young Books) 1965
The first publication of a newly discovered nonsense alphabet manuscript by Edward Lear, in which the drawings and verses differ markedly from those in other Lear alphabets.
P: Gág, Wanda. The ABC bunny. Hand lettered by Howard Gág. (London: Faber and Faber) 1962 Originally published: New York: Coward, McCann, 1933. Newbery Honor Book, 1934
J: Wildsmith, Brian. ABC. (London: Oxford University Press) 1962 Greenaway Medal, 1962
I: Falls, C.B. ‘The ABC book : designed and cut on wood’. (Garden City, N.Y. : Doubleday) 1923
H: Falls, C.B. ‘The ABC book : designed and cut on wood’. (Garden City, N.Y. : Doubleday) 1923
EFGH: Crane, Walter. An alphabet of old friends ; and, The absurd ABC. (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art and Thames and Hudson)
1981 Originally published: An alphabet of old friends. London : George Routledge and Sons, 1874. The absurd ABC. London : John Lane, Bodley Head, between 1895-98.
D: Barker, Cicely Mary. A flower fairy alphabet. (London : Blackie) 1934
Books:  These alphabet books from the Dorothy Neal White Collection and National Children’s Collection are on display outside the Turnbull Library Reading Rooms on Level 1 of the National Library building.
Whole Alphabet on a Page: Falls, C.B. ‘The ABC book : designed and cut on wood’. (Garden City, N.Y. : Doubleday) 1923

 


Contacts

Your comments or questions about the Society, the Collection, and this website are welcome
Enquiries about membership of the Friends may be directed to the Secretary, Friends of the Dorothy Neal White Collection
P0 Box 12-499, Thorndon, Wellington 6144.
Membership form

For research enquiries relating to the collection use the webform
http://www.natlib.govt.nz/services/ask-a-librarian

Telephone: 64-4-4704488.
Facsimile:  64-4-474 3035

Charitable Status:

New Zealand law allows non-profit organisations to apply for charitable status. This gives advantages over exemptions from some tax returns and allows members to claim tax exempt status for donations.

Our registration number is CC51738

2 Comments on “About us”

  1. Hello,
    I am writing from Auckland Libraries serials department regarding the latest newsletter for June 2016 no.53. We should be on your mailing list to receive hard copies of the newsletter, but may have dropped off the list.
    Could you please send a hard copy of the newsletter for June 2016 to the following address:

    Serials department
    Auckland Libraries Central
    P.O. Box 4138
    Shortland Street
    Auckland 1140

    Thank you very much in advance,
    Rose Allan

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