Often considered to be the first modern children's book, A Little Pretty Pocket-Book was written exclusively for children. At the time, that was revolutionary. Weird, we know.
The establishment of this home for orphans was an indication that people were finally waking up to the fact that children needed special protection and had special rights. Um, duh?
As the demand for labor rose during the Industrial Revolution in Britain, more and more children were forced to work long hours under terrible conditions in factories.
The Brothers Grimm introduced us to Cinderella, Rapunzel, Snow White, and loads of other wonderful characters in this collection of folktales.
Finally, the government gives in to pressure by social reformers to limit the number of hours that children can work in factories. Took 'em long enough.
This book became an overnight sensation when it was first published. It was rumored that even Queen Victoria, queen of Britain at the time, was a fan. (We're pretty sure Prince Harry is a fan of Shmoop, while we're on the topic.)
Nearly a century later, Lewis' book is the biggest hit since Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.
Dr. Seuss revolutionized the way we read: no more Dick and Jane from Boringsville, USA. No, the Cat is in town now. Take a look at our guide to The Cat in the Hat for more on Seuss's revolutionary ways.
What kid wouldn't want to hang out with Willy Wonka and the Oompa-Loompas? That's one children's book that stood the test of time.
With the publication of this book about a boy wizard, J.K. Rowling establishes herself as the new it-writer of children's literature.
It's the end of an era. By this point, it's not just kids lining up around the block to get their hands on a copy—adults are elbowing their way through, too.