"Just Mary": The Life of Mary Evelyn Grannan

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Dundurn, Feb 11, 2006 - Biography & Autobiography - 376 pages

Just Mary and Maggie Muggins are names that will arouse memories in those who grew up with CBC radio and television in the 1940s and 1950s. The creator of these and other children’s shows, former Fredericton schoolteacher Mary Grannan, became a radio star when she hit the national airwaves in 1939, her popularity peaking when Maggie Muggins moved to television in 1955. Long before The Friendly Giant and Mr. Dressup appeared, her work helped to shape the legacy of gentle children’s programming on CBC. Building on her broadcasting success, Grannan published over thirty books, most runaway best-sellers. Attired in stylish dress, extravagant hats, and enormous earrings, she made frequent guest appearances at public events across the country. She received the Beaver Award for her broadcasting and was honoured by the International Mark Twain Society and the Institute for Education by Radio at Ohio State University.

"Just Mary": The Life of Mary Evelyn Grannan is the first biography of this creative and once well-known Canadian woman. Immersing the reader in rich detail while showcasing excerpts of her writings through the years, the book presents an intimate examination of her life journey through previously unreleased personal letters, archives, an abundance of photographs, and interviews with family, friends, colleagues, and former students. This is the private Mary Grannan as the public has never before known her.

 

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Contents

Foreword by Gwendolyn Davies
9
The Schoolmarm 19141934
33
The New Circus 19351939
53
Toronto Beginning 19391940
83
Making the Grade 1940
103
First Books 19411943
117
The Birth of Maggie Muggins 19441945
147
Advent of Maggie Muggins on the Radio 19461948
169
Visit to the Old Countries 1949
193
Prelude to Television 19491954
207
Maggie Comes to Television 19541958
223
Many Books but No Cartoons 19561960
249
Last Years at CBC 19601962
273
The Last Public Performance 1967
303
Bibliography of Mary Grannans Books
331
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About the author (2006)

Margaret Hume, a former librarian at Concordia University in Montreal, received her education from the universities of New Brunswick and McGill. Born in Halifax, she grew up in New Brunswick in the 195s as an adoring young fan of Maggie Muggins. Margaret's later curiosity about Maggie Muggins author and fellow New Brunswicker, Mary Grannan, led to an extensive and rewarding journey of discovery into Grannan's life. Margaret lives with her husband in Vancouver. "Just Mary": The Life of Mary Evelyn Grannan is her first book.

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