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California Library Hall of Fame: Ray Bradbury
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California Library Hall of Fame

Ray Bradbury (1920-2012)

One of the greatest and most prolific authors of the 20th-century, Ray Bradbury was a passionate supporter of libraries, calling them “the center of our lives.” A 1938 graduate of Los Angeles High School, Bradbury sold newspapers on the street until 1942, continuing his education at his local public library. His most beloved work, Fahrenheit 451, famously began as a novella, The Fireman, in UCLA’s Powell Library, where he fed dimes into a pay typewriter. Bradbury was proudly self-educated in libraries, proclaiming that he didn't believe in colleges and universities--instead he believed in libraries! He once joked to the NY Times that he spoke for free at over 200 California libraries. He also allowed libraries to sell his autographed books and keep all the profits. Bradbury spoke at California Library Association annual conferences and constantly sang the praises of California libraries. When libraries in Pomona, Long Beach, Ventura, South Pasadena, and other areas were threatened with budget cuts and even closure, he was an outspoken, articulate, and attention-getting advocate for their survival. In 2004 Bradbury was awarded the Medal of Arts Lifetime Achievement Award and, in 2007, the Pulitzer Board recognized him with a Special Citation for his incredible lifetime achievements. A crater and an asteroid are also named after him, plus he has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  

 

Ray Bradbury was inducted into the California Library Hall of Fame in 2016. For more information about him, please see:

  • “Ray Bradbury” [official site], http://www.raybradbury.com
  • “Ray Bradbury,” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ray_Bradbury

  • Brandan Dowling,  “I Graduated from the Library: An Interview with Ray Bradbury,” Public Libraries Online (May 20, 2013).  http://publiclibrariesonline.org/2013/05/i-graduated-from-the-library-an-interview-with-ray-bradbury/

 

Photo credit: http://www.raybradbury.com/about.html