Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Great Americans A to Z: Carl Sandburg

How do you deal with failure? Do you stay positive knowing that you can still achieve greatness? One man did, and his failures did not stop him from living an accomplished life. C is for Carl Sandburg.

Carl Sandburg (1878-1967) was an American writer. His works earned him Pulitzer prizes and one Grammy award for a spoken word recording. 

Before accomplishing all that he did, Carl experienced failure. He went to college but dropped out. He attended West Point to join the military but failed the math and grammar exam. Then he settled in marriage, family, and politics, and greatness started to happen. 

Carl began to write children stories for his daughters. He felt that American children could not relate to the popular European stories of their time, and needed stories that depicted the American childhood experience. Carl eventually published these stories for other children to enjoy.

Rootabaga Stories, published in 1922, were children stories.

Carl went on to write Pulitzer prize winning poetry, biographies and other literature. Though he never graduated from college, he was invited to teach at a university because of his success. There are schools and libraries named after him in his honor, as well as the Carl Sandburg train in Illinois. 


  1. Interesting write up. A few years back, I visited a friend in Galesburg IL, and was delighted to discover that it was the hometown of Carl Sandburg. A lot of history there. -)

  2. a great 'C' and a nice tribute to Carl Sandburg

  3. great theme, chontali! Glad to see your blog up and running!

  4. I know about Sandburg, but Biddy and Ann were new to me. Enjoyed reading your brief bios, and interested in who you'll cover next.

  5. Great choice of history for America. Enjoyed reading a bit of him here.

  6. Teresa-I bet there's tons of history there. I would love to tread the places he's spent time, and his namesake school that kicked him out for not having an ID!

    Nutschell, thank YOU for stopping by to check me out, and for turning me on to this challenge with your wonderful blogging workshop.

    Thanks moondustwriter, Melanie, kellwright and KT Did for your comments.

    Chontali Kirk

  7. Another excellent post with an important message. Great job!

    An A to Z Co-Host
    Tossing It Out

  8. Hi Arlee, I fixed the captcha, thanks for instructions. What an honor it is that you've stopped by! Thank you again for executing your great idea. I wanted to start a blog and I'm learning so much in this challenge and reading some really great blog posts from others. So glad I attended the workshop.

  9. Amazing. It just goes to show that you should never give up and don't let failure stop you from trying again.

    I am enjoying your series.

  10. Carl Sandburg's homesite is located near Asheville, NC where I live. He is a real inspiration.

    1. I've been to his home! It is really cool because they basically froze it in time. When Sandburg died, his wife left everything as is so you get a really strong sense of what his everyday life looked like.

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Chontali Kirk