Chute, Marchette (1909–1994)

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Chute, Marchette (1909–1994)

American children's poet and biographer. Born Marchette Gaylord Chute on August 16, 1909, in Hazlewood, Minnesota; died on May 6, 1994, in New Jersey; daughter of Edith Mary (Pickburn) Chute and William Young Chute (realtor); educated at University of Minnesota, B.A., 1930; never married, no children.

Selected works:

Rhymes about Ourselves (1932); Rhymes about the Country (1941); The Innocent Wayfaring (1943); Geoffrey Chaucer of England (1946); Shakespeare of London (1950); Ben Jonson of Westminster (1953).

Marchette Chute's mother Edith home-schooled Marchette and her two sisters, Mary (M.G. Chute ) and Beatrice (B.J. Chute ). When Marchette was 11, the Chutes moved to Minneapolis, where the daughters were permitted to attend public school. Marchette went on to the University of Minnesota. After graduation, she returned home to live and work as an author, illustrator and children's tutor. Her first book, a collection of children's verse, was published in 1932.

The Chute sisters, all writers, and their mother moved to the beach in San Clemente, California, after Marchette's father died in 1939. Two years later, they relocated to New York City where, during the war, Marchette volunteered as a civil-defense worker. She began her biographies of classic authors at the New York Public Library, researching from nine in the morning until lunch, then writing at home in the afternoon.

Chute, B.J. (1913–1987)

American writer. Name variations: Joy Chute. Born Beatrice Joy Chute in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on January 13, 1913; died in 1987; daughter of William Young Chute (a realtor) and Edith Mary (Pickburn) Chute; attended private schools through grades, public high school, and took extensive courses from the University of Minnesota.

B.J. Chute worked as her father's secretary for ten years before she began writing professionally. Her books include The Fields Are White (1950), The End of Loving (1953), Greenwillow (1956), Journey to Christmas (1958), and The Moon and the Thorn (1961).

From 1950 until her sister Beatrice's death in 1987, the two shared a Manhattan apartment. Chute then moved to her sister Mary's New Jersey home where she resided until her death of pneumonia at age 84.

suggested reading:

Serafin, Steve, ed. Dictionary of Literary Biography. Vol. 103. Detroit, MI: Gale Research, 1991.

Crista Martin , Boston, Massachusetts