E. B. White

E. B. White
E. B. White

E. B. White, the author of Charlotte’s Web, was catapulted to fame due to his contributions to The New Yorker magazine for over fifty years. He is also known for having edited The Elements of Style, a guide to the English language style. William Strunk Jr had first published it. Besides his works with adult content, E. B. White made substantial and lasting contributions to children’s literature writing books like Stuart Little, The Trumpet of the Swan, and Charlotte’s Web. Thanks to such marvelous works, the author was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Other honors include Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal; Presidential Medal of Freedom; Newbery Medal; and PEN New England Award which was attributed to his publication Letters of E. B. White.

Personal life and education

Elwyn Brooks White was born on July 11, 1899, in Mount Vernon, New York City. He was the last born to Jessie Hart White and Samuel Tilly White, both of whom had deep roots in art. Whereas the mother was the daughter of a painter, the father was the president of a piano firm. E. B. White drew most of his lessons about the natural world from his older brother, Stanley Hart White, who was a professor of landscape architecture.

White always claimed that he had a smaller heart and a large pen, a statement he coined to cover up his shyness from women. That shyness did not prevent him from having a wife. He married Katherine Angell and had a son named Joel White. Katherine had a son from her first marriage, Roger Angell, who was a fiction editor and baseball writer.

White’s love for farms, farming, and animals was unmatched. He also maintained a keen eye on weather patterns. It is this love for nature that made him retreat to his farm in North Brooklin where he died on October 1, 1985.

The American writer graduated from Cornell University in 1922, obtaining a Bachelor of Arts degree. His parent’s exposure in the same field had influenced his study choices. While in the university he got the nickname “Andy” which was a tradition for male children surnamed White.

Career life

Upon graduating, he got an opportunity to work at the United Press and The American Legion News Service. He began writing for The Seattle Times and also the Frank Seaman advertising agency as a copywriter.

The New Yorker is the one place where White spent a significant part of his career life. He had published his first article in 1925 before he joined the staff in 1927. According to James Thurber, White was a quiet man who had little regard for publicity throughout his time at The New Yorker. He often used the fire escape route to leave the office so as not to interact with visitors he did not know.

E. B. White wrote for both adult and young readers. From articles to books and letters, the author made immense contributions to the literary world, which explains why he won so many awards. The Pulitzer Prize crowned all his awards.


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