Marian Calabro

Marian Calabro is the author of The Perilous Journey of the Donner Party, which earned the California Library Association’s Beatty Award and the Virginia Library Association’s Jefferson Cup (honor book), was named to New York Public Library’s Top 100 Books for Reading and Sharing, and was one of the American Library Association’s Notable Books for Children. Her other nonfiction history books for young readers include Great Courtroom Lawyers: Fighting the Cases that Made History; Zap! A Brief History of TV; and Operation Grizzly Bear.

Currently the president of, a custom publishing firm, Calabro has also written the histories of businesses such as Public Service Enterprise Group and The Pep Boys; in connection with the latter, she appeared on The History Channel’s “Modern Marvels” series. She frequently leads writing workshops for adult learners at Columbia University and community colleges in her home state of New Jersey. She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Rutgers College, where she made minor history as first woman admitted to what had been an all-male college for 206 years. For further biographical information, visit and Wikipedia.

Catherine Gourley

Author Catheriine Gourley Media literacy & popular culture, women's history, child labor, the American Civil War—Catherine Gourley’s nonfiction books are social histories that tell the story of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances. Her latest book is The Horrors of Andersonville: Life and Death in a Civil War Prison. It explores the human suffering and media sensationalism surrounding one of the Civil War's most tragic chapters. The Junior Library Guild has chosen The Horrors of Andersonville for its best books list for 2010.

In 2008, the Children’s Book Council named all five titles in Gourley’s popular women’s history series, “Images and Issues of Women in the Twentieth Century”, to its list of Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People. Booklist, likewise, recognized the series by naming all five titles to its Top 10 list of Nonfiction Book for Youth.

At present, Gourley is the national director for Letters About Literature, a reading promotion program of the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. In addition, she is the principal curriculum writer for The Story of Movies, an educational outreach program on film study and visual literacy developed by The Film Foundation, Los Angeles, under the auspices of director Martin Scorsese. 

Gourley has presented both national and international programs on her books as well as her consulting work for both the Library of Congress and The Film Foundation.  HBO recently featured Gourley in “Faces of Feminism,” a documentary film that accompanies HBO’s hit series “Boardwalk Empire.”

Catherine Gourley lives in Woodbridge, Virginia, with her husband, Dennis.


William G. Scheller

William Scheller is the author or co-author of nearly 30 books, including Columbus and the Age of Discovery, Spectacular Paris, and America: A History in Art. He has written some 300 articles on a broad variety of subjects, with his byline appearing in, among other publications, Islands, National Geographic Traveler, National Geographic World, The Washington Post Magazine, The Christian Science Monitor, Coastal Living , and Yankee. His articles have been anthologized in several collections, including Italy: True Stories of Life on the and Venice: The Collected Traveler . Since 2007, he has been co-editor of, and a frequent contributor to, the online travel magazine

In the course of various assignments, Scheller has traversed sections of the northern Ontario wilderness by canoe; retraced much of Christopher Columbus' 1492 route through the Bahamas; twice completed the transcontinental "One Lap of America" road rally; driven the entire Italian coastline from France to former Yugoslavia; worked on a salmon boat off the coast of British Columbia; covered a 700-mile route through Quebec's Gaspé Peninsula by snowmobile; bicycled the length of Prince Edward Island; and crossed North America eight times by train.

Scheller holds a bachelor’s degree from St. Peter’s College, New Jersey, where he majored in English and minored in art history, and a master’s degree in English from the University of Vermont. He lives in northern Vermont with his wife, Kay, with whom he founded Jasper Heights Press, a publisher of regional travel guides. Bill and Kay have a son, David, a recent graduate of the University of Toronto who is currently teaching English in Japan.