Why was the DCF book award named after Dorothy Canfield Fisher?

dorothycanfieldfisher1956smEvery year, Vermont students read books on the DCF list and vote for their favorite book. Since 1957, this award has been given to a good children’s book. The award also honors Dorothy Canfield Fisher, a Vermont author who wrote books for children and adults.

Dorothy Canfield was born in Kansas in 1879. She spent summers with relatives in Arlington, Vermont. After Dorothy married James Fisher in 1907, they moved to Arlington and lived there for the next 50 years. Dorothy died in 1958.

Many of Dorothy Canfield Fisher’s fiction stories are set in Vermont. The book Understood Betsy (1917) tells the story of a city girl who comes to Vermont to live with her cousins on a farm. Betsy learns how to churn butter and attends school at a one-room schoolhouse. She learns to appreciate her Vermont cousins and their way of life.

dcfarlington1943smDorothy Canfield Fisher also wrote many books for adults. She encouraged people to read books through the “Book of the Month” club.

She was a supporter of education. At a time when many women did not go to college, Dorothy earned a Ph.D in French literature from Colombia University. She was the first woman to serve on the Vermont State Board of Education. 

The next time you read a book on the DCF list, remember Dorothy Canfield Fisher.  Do you think it was a good choice to name the award after her?

Thinking about Historyarticle

Dorothy Canfield Fisher wrote a lot of stories about Vermonters. Some of the characters were real people like Ann Story. Other characters were made up. Can you write a story about Vermont history?

Learn Moremapncompass

link What books are on the DCF list this year? Which book is your favorite? (outside link)
explorerlogoib Read Understood Betsy, a book by Dorothy Canfield Fisher
explorerlogoib Understood Betsy was written in 1917. What was Vermont like then? Vermont a Century Ago
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