Heritage Hall20 High Street
Hamilton, Ohio 45011
513-737-5958 | http://hamiltonheritagehall.org
Make Way for McCloskey!
Birthplace of beloved children’s author Robert McCloskey, Hamilton pays tribute to his life’s work with an exhibit inside the Hamilton Municipal Building.
Heritage Hall, located in the Hamilton Municipal Building, displays Art Deco design, intricate stone carvings, and an exhibit dedicated to award-winning illustrator, Robert McCloskey. Not only did McCloskey leave his footprint on the building itself, having decorated it at age 19, but he is also honored in the building’s museum exhibit. Visitors will find McCloskey’s two Caldecott Medals, honorary degrees, published works, sketches, photographs, and more.
Robert McCloskey was born in Hamilton on September 15, 1914. He spent his childhood there, attending Hamilton schools and leaving his artistic mark on the town. After high school, he received a scholarship to study in Boston and later moved to New York. In 1942, McCloskey won his first Caldecott Medal for Make Way for Ducklings, depicting a family of ducks as they attempt to navigate the busy streets of Boston. He won his second Caldecott Medal in 1958 for his seventh book, Time of Wonder. McCloskey was the first author to win two of the prestigious awards. McCloskey died in Deer Isle, Maine in 2003, but his work will be remembered for generations to come.
A visit to the McCloskey exhibit is worthwhile for any lover of literature, especially for those who appreciate the childhood classics created by this author and illustrator. In addition to writing and illustrating, however, McCloskey also dabbled in other art forms, such as music and sculpture, before settling into the literary world. Likewise, these forms of art are highlighted in the exhibit. Beyond the McCloskey exhibit, Hamilton sits beside the Great Miami River, making for scenic views while strolling through town. Visitors of Hamilton are sure to enjoy a delightful daytrip full of history and charm.
Notes for Travelers
On your way into the Hamilton Municipal Building, take a walk through Lentil Park, a small garden area named in honor of McCloskey’s first book, Lentil (1940). The entrance to the exhibit is on the side of the building facing the river. Don’t miss the totem pole carved by McCloskey as a camp counselor. It stands inside the doors of Heritage Hall and pays tribute to the many facets of McCloskey’s artistic talent. Free parking is available in the lot next to the building; metered street parking is also available.