Beverly Cleary Children’s Library, Portland, Ore.


Children’s author Beverly Cleary left Portland, Ore., for Ontario to attend Chaffey Junior College from 1934 to 1936, in the days when the college was on the Chaffey High campus in Ontario. Tuition was free, which was inducement to get her to make the move. She lived a few blocks away and, her sophomore year, worked at the Ontario Public Library.

An effort to name Ontario’s children’s room for her failed in 2006. Portland, where she lived from ages 6 to 18, named the children’s room of its main library for Cleary in 1997. I shot these while checking out the library on my vacation in September. It was serendipity, as I’d forgotten having read that the library had a room named for her. But there it was.

The city also has a Beverly Cleary Sculpture Garden depicting characters from her books.


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  • John Baugh

    Our library should be named after her. We should never name a library after a politician who is still in office. It looks like we are asking for something in return.

  • Lois Robbins

    I love this!! I’m so glad Portland did this. Now I’ll have to visit. It’s on the list.

  • John Clifford

    Did Jabba the Hut have her frozen in carbonite?

    • davidallen909

      She looks more relaxed than Han Solo, you have to admit.