- Title Pages
- 1 Ruth Krauss’s Charmed Childhood
- 2 Becoming Crockett Johnson
- 3 Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman
- 4 Punching the Clock and Turning Left
- 5 First Draft
- 6 Crockett and the Red Crayon
- 7 “We Met, and That Was It!”
- 8 Barnaby
- 9 A Good Man and His Good Wife
- 10 The Athens of South Norwalk
- 11 Art and Politics
- 12 At Home with Ruth and Dave
- 13 The Big World and the Little House
- 14 Artists Are to Watch
- 15 The Art of Collaboration
- 16 Harold
- 17 Striking Out into New Areas of Experimentation
- 18 New Adventures on Page and Screen
- 19 “Hitting on All 24 Cylinders”
- 20 Poet in the News, Cartoonist on TV
- 21 Lorca Variations and Harold’s ABC
- 22 Provocateur and Philosopher
- 23 Painting, Passports, and Protest
- 24 Theorems in Color, Poems on Stage
- 25 “You’re Only as Old as Other People Think You Are”
- 26 What Would Harold Do?
- 27 Life after Dave
- 28 Children Are to Love
What Would Harold Do?
What Would Harold Do?
- (p.255) 26 What Would Harold Do?
- Crockett Johnson and Ruth Krauss
- University Press of Mississippi
Upon learning of Crockett Johnson’s lung cancer, Ruth Krauss fell into a state of collapse. At the end of the first week of February 1975, he checked in to Norwalk Hospital in Connecticut. He then underwent surgery at New York’s Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center to remove part of his lungs, but the operation’s ameliorative effects were temporary. The cancer had already spread, and further operations would not only be dangerously invasive but also unlikely to succeed. Johnson’s once large body began to waste away. He was scared, but when he was asked “What would Harold do?” he grew interested in looking at his illness from Harold’s perspective and calmed down. In July, Johnson passed away. In its obituary, The New York Times ran an obituary describing him as a cartoonist and creator of Barnaby, author of “more than a dozen children’s books, including Harold and the Purple Crayon and Harold’s Fairy Tale.” There was also a photo of Johnson and a drawing of Barnaby and Mr. O’Malley, who would be his artistic and intellectual legacy. Johnson’s ashes were scattered in Long Island Sound in New York.
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