Carrie Papa Biographical Fact Sheet
- Carrie lives in Bridgewater, NJ with Albert, her husband of 56 years.
- The Papa’s have one daughter and two grandchildren also living in Bridgewater.
- Although both were NJ residents, the Papa’s met in Germany when both were assigned to Berlin with the US Diplomatic Corps. Carrie and three sisters grew up in Franklin, NJ where her father worked in the zinc mine.
- After completing the Berlin assignment, Carrie and Al both returned to the US and were married. Albert, a career diplomat, was assigned to Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Carrie confesses that she and Albert had to go to the local library to find out about their assignment as they knew nothing about Saudi Arabia.
- Dhahran was known as a “hardship” post, but their next assignment Rio de Janeiro was delightful. Carrie returned home early from Saudi Arabia to give birth to their daughter Jo Anne, and did not join Albert in Rio until the baby was six months old.
- Other assignments included Ankara, Turkey; Rome, Italy; and Geneva, Switzerland. Carrie says she could not choose a favorite place as she enjoyed them all, especially the people of the various countries. Through the years, Carrie has kept in touch with friends from every nation in which she lived. Her interest in people and their history was sharpened during the Papa’s more than 30 years of living in foreign countries.
- Most of Carrie’s writing has been historical.
- On returning to the US, Carrie became immersed in her own country’s history. While Al continued with the Diplomatic Corp, on assignment to New York City, Carrie worked with a local historical society to save, restore, and establish a museum in a one-room schoolhouse dating back nearly two centuries. Carrie’s first historical books Stones and Stories and The Old Monroe School Interpretive Guide were written during this period.
- To gain a better understanding of the past, Carrie, now in her 50s, went to Rutgers to earn a degree in history and English. Some four books and 15 years later, she graduated with highest honors.
- In addition to numerous historical and religious articles, Carrie’s other books include The Carousel Keepers: An Oral History of American Carousels, A Mile Deep and Black as Pitch: An Oral History of the Franklin and Sterling Hill Mines, and Prayers of a Young Addict.
- September 2008 Abingdon Press released Carrie’s sixth book: The Brightest Star of All: Christmas Stories for the Family. This is a collection of Christmas legends from around the world with notes about their origins and other facts. Simple activities and craft suggestions are included to help bring families together and readers of all ages to a new understanding and appreciation of the Nativity.
- Carrie is now at work on three books, all of different genres: Bicentennial Voices – An Oral History of the Celebration, Our Christmas Joy, Our Christmas Angel, and Diamonds on the Midway: A
Guide to Antique Carousels. At 82, Carrie says “Life is beautiful and we are grateful for each day.”