Allan W. Eckert was an American historian, historical novelist, and naturalist.
Eckert was born in Buffalo, New York, and raised in the Chicago, Illinois area, but had been a long-time resident of Bellefontaine, Ohio, near where he attended college. As a young man, he hitch-hiked around the United States, living off the land and learning about wildlife. He began writing about nature and American history at the age of thirteen, eventually becoming an author of numerous books for children and adults. His children's novel, Incident at Hawk's Hill, was a runner-up for the Newbery Medal in 1972. One of his novels tells how the great auk went extinct.
In addition to his novels, he also wrote several unproduced screenplays and more than 225 "Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom" television shows for which he received an Emmy Award.
In a 1999 poll conducted by the Ohioana Library Association, jointly with Toni Morrison, Allan W. Eckert was voted "Favorite Ohio Writer of All Time."
Eckert died in his sleep on July 7, 2011, in Corona, California, at the age of 80
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