Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Natalia Maree Belting  

Pen Name: Natalia Belting, Natalia M. Belting

Genre: Non-Fiction & Fiction

Audience: Adult; Children;

Born: July 11, 1915 in Oskaloosa, Iowa

Died: December 17, 1997

-- Natalia Maree Belting on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Belting lived in Urbana most of her life, living there until her death in 1997.

Biographical and Professional Information

Natalia Belting was a history professor, a writer, a lay minister, and an environmentalist. She drew upon her extensive knowledge of folklore in writing books for children. A professor of history at the University of Illinois for 43 years, she was particularly interested in the history of early French colonization of North America and the history of Native Americans in Illinois. This research formed the basis of her first children's book, ''Pierre of Kaskaskia'', as well as her third book, ''In Enemy Hands''. ''Indy and Mr. Lincoln'', and ''Verity Mullens and the Indian'' were also based on historical incidents. For the most part though, Belting adapted myths and folktales for young readers. Natalia wrote more than twenty works for children as well as the weekly column ''Illinois Past'' for the ''Champaign News-Gazette'' and other central Illinois newspapers.Belting received a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana in 1936, and went on to earn a master's degree and Ph.D. in American history (1940) from the same institution. She taught history at her alma mater from 1942 until her retirement in 1985. She became an associate professor in 1973, retired as a full professor and was a professor emerita from 1996 through 1997. Throughout her adult life, Belting was also active in community affairs. The Papers of Natalia Maree Belting are housed at [ University of Illinois Archives].

Published Works

  • Pierre of Kaskaskia: Pioneer Boy of New France, reprinted 2017
  • Kaskaskia Under the French Regime, 1940 - reprinted 2013
  • The Moon is a Crystal Ball: Unfamiliar Legends of the Stars, Bobs-Merrill, 1952
  • In Enemy Hands, Bobs Merrill-1953
  • Three Apples Fell from Heaven: Unfamiliar Legends of the Trees, Bobs-Merrill, 1953
  • King Solomon's Cat: Folk Tales Around the World, Rap, 1959 - reprinted 1968
  • Cat Tales, Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1959
  • Indy and Mr. Lincoln, Dutton, 1960
  • Verity Mullens and the Indian, Holt, 1960
  • The Beginnings: Champaign (Illinois) in the 1850's and 1860's, 1960
  • Elves and Ellefolk; Tales of the Little People, Holt, 1961
  • The Long Tailed Bear, Bobbs, 1961
  • The Sun is a Golden Earring, Holt, Rinehart & Winston, 1962 - reprinted 2016
  • The Calendar Moon, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1964
  • The Earth Is On A Fish`s Back, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1965
  • The Stars are Silver Reindeer, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1966
  • Christmas Folk, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1969
  • Winter`s Eve, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1969
  • Summer`s Coming In, Holf, Rinehart & Winston, 1970
  • The Land of Taffeta Dawn, Dutton, 1973
  • Our Fathers Had Powerful Songs, Dutton, 1974
  • Whirlwind is a Ghost Dancing, Dutton, 1974
  • Sidney, Holt, 1974
  • Moon Was Tired of Walking on Air, Houghton/Mifflin, 1992
  • Why There Are Shooting Stars, Pacific Learning, 1997

Selected Titles At Your Library

ISBN: 0243459556. OCLC Number:

FORGOTTEN Books,. [Place of publication not identified],. 2017.

Kaskaskia under the French regime /
ISBN: 0809325365. OCLC Number:

Southern Illinois University Press,. Carbondale :. 2003.

"While the French explorers Louis Joliet and Pierre Marquette were traveling along the Illinois River in the 1670s, they discovered a peaceful tribe who called themselves the Kaskaskia." "First published in 1948, Kaskaskia under the French Regime focuses on the social and economic history of French Kaskaskia from 1703 to 1765. Natalia Maree Belting brings to life the prairie terrain, the Kaskaskia mission, early architecture, building methods and materials, the beginnings of government, everyday life, domestic tools and utensils, commerce, and the social customs of the pioneer."

Sun is a golden earring (classic reprint).
ISBN: 1333785011. OCLC Number:

FORGOTTEN Books,. [Place of publication not identified],. 2016.

Calendar moon
ISBN: 0030156513. OCLC Number:

Holt, Rinehart and Winston. New York,. [1964]

Folklore from many lands concerning seasonal changes, month by month.

Christmas folk,
ISBN: 0030723752. OCLC Number:

Holt, Rinehart and Winston. New York,. [1969]

Presents in blank verse the traditions and folklore of an Elizabethan Christmas season from November 30th through January 5th.

Winter's eve
ISBN: 0030829313. OCLC Number:

Holt, Rinehart, and Winston. New York,. [1969]

Describes the traditional English festivities designed to ward off the spells of the evil ones from Winter's Eve, on September 28, to Halloween night.

Summer's coming in,
ISBN: 0030842506. OCLC Number:

Holt, Rinehart and Winston. New York,. [1970]

Relates in blank verse the festivities of St. George's Day, St. Mark's Eve, Beltane night, May Day, and other English celebrations that mark the arrival of spring and summer.

The land of the taffeta dawn
ISBN: 0525333800. OCLC Number:

Dutton. New York,. [1973]

Describes in verse life in the city of Chʻang-an, capital of the Chinese empire of Tʻang a thousand years ago.

Our fathers had powerful song /
ISBN: 0525364854. OCLC Number:

Dutton. New York,. [1974]

Poems from various American Indian tribes celebrating the creation and life of man.

Whirlwind is a ghost dancing,
ISBN: 0525426256. OCLC Number:

Dutton. New York,. [1974]

A collection of poems, explaining the elements of nature, from various American Indian tribes including Iroquois, Micmac, and Shoshoni.

Moon was tired of walking on air /
ISBN: 0395538068. OCLC Number:

Houghton Mifflin,. Boston :. 1992.

A collection of myths of various South American Indian tribes, explaining the natural world.

Why there are shooting stars /
ISBN: 0478204736. OCLC Number:

Learning Media ;. Wellington, N.Z. :. 1997.

Legend reveals shooting stars to be dancing, falling coyotes.


The Sun Is a Golden Earring

  • Caldecott Medal honor book, 1962

    Other Awards