This is the illustrated diary of 12-year-old Anne Elizabeth Rector who lived in New York City in 1912.
She kept her diary faithfully for a whole year, from Jan. 1, 1912 until Christmas Day of that same year. I suppose new amusements awaited her under the Christmas tree after that and the diary was abandoned.
What is so magical about this book are Anne Elizabeth's illustrations of each entry. They are charming little ink and watercolor drawings reproduced from her original diary. I only wish I could draw as well now!
The entries contain her struggle with her mother to allow her to take art classes. Neither her mother, father nor grandmother think a girl needs to attend art classes. I can so relate to that...especially her entry where she offers to give up piano lessons. There's a conversation I had with my own mother many times.
How different my life would be today if I had only read this book when I was 12!
Anne Elizabeth's Diary Entries:
January 1, 1912
Daddy gave me all these art supplies for Christmas. Mother gave me one thing, this book. She instructed me to write in it every day. I shall draw here too. Mother need not know.
February 17, 1912
Today I wore my new woolen dress. It is a brown challis with a yellow lined collar and cuffs embroidered in brown. Mother got it to fit perfectly. Another battle about the art class. She does not think we have the extra money. I said I could stop piano lessons.