Harriette Robinet

The granddaughter of a slave owned by General Robert E. Lee, Harriette Robinet (born 1931) grew up in Washington, D.C. After graduating from the College of New Rochelle, she earned a masters degree in microbiology from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. Robinet worked as a bacteriologist at several hospitals and also taught at Xavier University. Active in the civil rights and fair housing movements, she and her husband led many protest marches and were one of the first Blacks to purchase a home in Oak Park, Illinois.

Robinet pivoted from being a microbiologist to writing historical fiction books for children. Her books feature children from important periods of American history and also include characters who are physically challenged. Robinet’s books have won numerous awards including the Carl Sandburg Award.

Why this stop? The Blue Line Harlem Avenue stop is not far from Harriette Robinet’s South Oak Park home.

Connect—Know a young reader? Why not introduce them to Harriette Robinet’s books?