Eleanor Estes, who celebrated her birthday on May 9th, was the sort of author who makes her stories live in both the imaginations and the hearts of her readers. Her well-loved Moffat Tales began with her first book, The Moffats, published in 1941. Based on her own childhood, the town of Cranbury was her own home town of West Haven, Connecticut.
Estes was born Eleanor Ruth Rosenfield in 1906. She began her career as a librarian, but turned to writing when a case of tuberculosis kept her in bed for a protracted length of time. She married Rice Estes, who was also a librarian.
A three time Newbery Honor winner for The Middle Moffat (1942), Rufus M (1943), and The Hundred Dresses (1944), Estes received the award in 1953 for Ginger Pye. Ms. Estes died in 1988.