Sunday, July 08, 2007

What's your oldest book?

Have any treasures to share? So, what books do you have that you hold onto that you do not re-read or maybe have never read, but rather have them more for sentimental or monetary value? Did you inherit them or were they given to you years ago as a child and just can't seem to part with them?

In every room of our home we have books, and occassionally even the bathroom will sport one or two from time to time. However, in the living room there behind the glass front bookcase is where I house a number of really, really old books. This is were I keep the books I inherited from my grandparents. Several of the books date back to their grandparents ( I think that is two greats for me). These I keep for sentimental and historical reasons.

There is the Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte an 1847 edition from The Star Library series. Then there is the A First Book in American History by Edward Eggleston a 1899 second printing. Ah, then the little bitty picture books from the same era. Not what we see now days and makes one very thankful for Beatrix Potter. One of these is Pictures for the Little Ones whose title page states Picture Story Book from D. Lothrop &Co.1875. I believe it is what one would call children's literature of the time. It is filled with a number of short stories preceded by an illustration. My favorite book though is from my Grandfather's Aunt Lottie. It is Kathrina: Her Life and Mine, in a poem by J. G. Holland. It was a Christmas gift to her from her parents in 1868 and beautifully inscribed on the front page. Another is a sentimental gift I actually received from my husband when we were dating. It was a reminder of a visit we had made to the home of James Whitcomb Riley. My sweetie had found an 1897 edition of Riley's Neghborly Poems (yep, that is spelled correctly). No, I haven't read any of these and probably won't, but I do get them out from time to time and just flip through them and ponder how our language and text has changed so much in this last century.

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Blogger mjd said...

Oh, I love this topic so much that I may borrow your topic for my blog. Three of my favorite older books are Bibles. Two are family Bibles from either side of the MJD/Daddy D duo. The third is a pocket-size 1860 New Testament that belonged to my grandfather, John Milton Gray. My grandfather was born in 1855. I also have a funny little book from 1927 titled 1001 One Minute Stories.

12:18 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

I found your site through mjd (Return of the White Robin). Lovely blog, with some great links as well. My four-year-old devours books, so the links are helpful!

2:12 PM  
Blogger Molly said...

Over from MJD. Love your idea of listing the oldest books we have. Would like to do a post myself on it , if you wouldn't mind....

4:46 PM  
Blogger Candace Salima . . . the LDS Nora Roberts said...

As you talked about the value of old books handed down from generation to generation it made me think of the huge library my mother has always had. My father died in March and I have spent long weeks and months at my mother's side, doing the best I can, to help her while still taking care of my husband (he has kidney failure.)

During one of these times, my mother and I were talking and she showed me a book she was going to hand down to me. I am directly descended from William the Conqueror, which is kinda cool. The book my mother showed me was a book published during the time of William the II's court. I felt so privileged. Books are the best, aren't they?

11:42 AM  

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