Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Shel Silverstein  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Poetry

Audience: Adult;

Born: September 25, 1930 in Chicago, Illinois

Died: May 10, 1999 in Key West, Florida

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Illinois Connection

Shel Silverstein grew up on Palmer Street in Chicago and attended Darwin Elementary, Roosevelt High School, University Of Illinois and Roosevelt University. He was a lifelong White Sox fan and worked as a hotdog vendor at the original Comiskey Park when he was young. His popularity with both the young and the old, and connection to his birthplace, all came together on July 13, 2009, when Millennium Park celebrated its 5th birthday with a night of song and spoken word in his honor called SHELabration.

Biographical and Professional Information

Shel Silverstein was a poet, songwriter, composer, cartoonist, screenwriter and children's writer.


Where the Sidewalk Ends

New York Times Outstanding Book Award, 1974,

Michigan Young Readers` Award, 1981

George G. Stone Award, 1984

Other Awards and Honors

Chicago Literary Hall of Fame, 2014

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (No)

Selected Titles At Your Library

A light in the attic /
ISBN: 0060513063. OCLC Number: 7574216

. .

A collection of humorous poems and drawings.

Different dances
ISBN: 0060554304. OCLC Number: 56748922

. .

An adult collection of social satire and sexual politics.

Don't bump the glump! :
ISBN: 9780061493386. OCLC Number: 171613774

. .

A most unusual collection of whacky, funny, scary creatures with imaginative fantasies in verse.

Falling up :
ISBN: 0060513098. OCLC Number: 34736959

. .

A collection of humorous poems and drawings.

Runny Babbit :
ISBN: 0060823968. OCLC Number: 62192122

Harper Children's Audio,. .

Runny Babbit's topsy-turvy world is brought to life through wordplay and drawings.

Runny Babbit returns :
ISBN: 9780062479853. OCLC Number: 972226276

. .

Collects poems and drawings that feature Runny and other woodland characters speaking his topsy-turvy language.

Shi luo de yi jiao yu jian da yuan man
ISBN: 9787544257671. OCLC Number: 812786535

. .

A missing piece, looking for someone to carry it along, finally develops its own momentum.

The giving tree & other Shel Silverstein songs
ISBN: 1564066509. OCLC Number: 27323063

Sony Kids Music,. .

The giving tree /
ISBN: 0060840986. OCLC Number: 71226648

HarperCollinsPublishers,. .

A young boy grows to manhood and old age experiencing the love and generosity of a tree which gives to him without thought of return. A parable that offers an interpretation of the gift of giving and a serene acceptance of another's capacity to love in return.

The missing piece
ISBN: 0060256710. OCLC Number: 2146538

Harper & Row,. .

A circle has difficulty finding its missing piece but has a good time looking for it.

Where the sidewalk ends :
ISBN: 9780062693563. OCLC Number: 1018479725

. .

A collection of humorous poems and drawings.

Who wants a cheap rhinoceros? /
ISBN: 0689851138. OCLC Number: 9083300

Macmillan ;. .

Overview: Looking for a new pet? Bored with cats, dogs, goldfish, gerbils, and hamsters? How about a cheap rhinoceros? Shel Silverstein's loving look at the joys of rhino ownership may convince you to be the one lucky kid to take home this very, very unusual pet. There are lots of things a rhinoceros can do around one's house, including eating bad report cards before one's parents see them, tiptoeing downstairs for a midnight snack, and collecting extra allowance.