Welcome to Old Children's Books, selling children's literature and picture books online since 1994. We stock more than 10,000 scarce, collectible and out-of-print books, for readers, teachers and collectors.
New York: McLoughlin Bros. (1884), publication data is on the very bottom edge; three folded linen sheets making ten interior pages, coloured Arts and Crafts inspired design on front and back with little girl reading and playing with her doll, red letters, three to a page, with woodcuts of daily objects, 4"x5.75".
Sweet pictures of the little girl on the front, with what appear to be older stock woodcuts to illustrate the letters.
CONDITION: Good Minus; cover faded, corners deeply creased, slightly frayed, small stains and foxing throughout, rusted staples, pencil line on one spread, and child has converted number line 0 to 10, still the covers are adequate and the interior red letters bright.#17530
New York, McLoughlin Bros., no date, (c. mid 1880's?), no number or series, 3 folded sheets making ten interior pages, front cover with young child and baby pulling on a book, another book already destroyed on the floor, and, on the back cover, a rather bizarre scene with a blonde man in Japanese costume holding a little girl in a trailing dress, the four interior alphabet pages are full colour very bright chromos perhaps inspired by earlier woodcuts, the other pages are the primer's text; on fine linen cut on straight of goods; 5.75"x8.25".
A first primer, with three examples of each initial letter sound in the small pictures "Quaker, Quail, Quiver" and CVC words and sentences to practice on, ending with a simple story. The front cover gives an interesting message about the value of learning to read!
CONDITION: Good; faded, flecked front cover, small pencil initials on back and number on front corner, top corners are bent but not creased, no fraying, interior coloured pictures very bright.#17531
New York: Henry N. Abrams, 1989/1988; translated from the Dutch; green shiny boards with large painting of the Sandman and yawning animals; yellow endpapers with colourful design; heavy paper and boards, in jacket identical to boards, 10.2x8.2; 121 pp.
Easily found in your local bookstore, but an interesting alphabet nonetheless, featuring an assortment of large, sleepy animals.
CONDITION: Very Good in Near Fine jacket; gift inscription on half title; bumped bottom corner, pages also, little bumps on top edge.#19276
ABC - Petersham, Maud and Miska./Maud & Miska Petersham, illustrators.
New York: Macmillan, 1941, stated 1st; blue cloth boards, orange-red endpapers, in jacket with huge eagle protecting a sleeping boy and a little girl; 8x10"; np.
O is for Old Glory. Q is for Quakers. R is for Redskins. S is for South America and Simon Bolivar. A little essay on each.
CONDITION: Very Good in Very Good Plus jacket; gift inscription from Feb. 1942 on endpaper; all is clean, straight, and fairly tight, but Maurice unfortunately turned the pages from the bottom and loved this book, thus there are light wrinkles to the bottom page margins; in clean flat jacket with small sticker stain on front, and small nick in spine, smooth edges, no chips or tears; unclipped $2.00.#19275
New York: McLoughlin, 1905, three very stiff glazed linen sheets, folded and center stapled, making 12 pages; little girl on front, plain back, every sheet has full colour letters and little paintings to go with them, as well as numbered lessons that go from sight words, to CV words to CVC words to little stories at the end; 5.4x8.25
A charming redheaded child on the front and an interesting primer, a variant of an older one (uses Xerxes and Obelisk).
CONDITION: Fair, Christmas gift inscription 1907; structurally quite sound, with just a bit of fraying, but extremely soiled throughout, especially on covers and first half of book.#19019
Barcelona: Editorial Lumen, 1981/1971, segunda edicion (in Spanish); illustrations for Jessie G. Townsend's English version, 1967, Cape; orange glossy boards with Brigida and Carlos playing near a giant A, on the back a giant Z with Ursula knitting a giraffe scarf; black endpapers with bright blue letter outlines and child; 9.5x9.6"; 24.4x24.6cm; np.
Each letter has an original little poem in Spanish about each active child and a large facing coloured illustration. A es para Aurora, B es para Brigida.
CONDITION: Very Good Plus; tiny rubs on extrem tips, 2 nicks on edges, otherwise clean and straight with flat pages and straight corners, opens freely, 4 x 1 cm publisher's pull tear from pasting down on front endpapers.#19277
Chicago: Rand McNally, 1930/1929; the first printing of the first edition of this book was in 1929 (Baumgarten); green boards with dark green titles and large plate in stamped border, on endpapers, coloured pictures of babies and their hornbooks and poem; 6.8x9.1; 64 pp.
CONDITION: Very Good Plus; owner inscription and also child's name in half title hornbook "bookplate"; very light bumps to spine ends, light rubs to corners, remarkably clean and undamaged pasted-on plate.#17357
No publication data,(c. 1915?) paper cover with illustration of boy teaching a group of children sitting on a log, paper is pasted to stiff card back, 4 folded pages, making 16 interior pages, printed on one side only (8 coloured pages); 4.25"x6.3".
A little Sunday School Prize book, probably from a German American community, with a medal pasted on a blank page, "Little Cross Crown System, For Increasing Sunday School Attendance Official Seal" along with the purple ribbon, laid in, which must have come with it. The coloured lithos of shaded fruits, vegetables, and common household items are really quite beautiful.
CONDITION: Very Good; lightly soiled covers, two tiny chipped spots on front of about 1/16", interior is pristine.#17532
New York: Sam'l Gabriel Sons, (1923); #864, Linette. 4 large sheets sewn and folded, making 14 interior pages; cover with children on a gate feeding the baby calf carrots; sweet donkey and her baby on the back; 9.75x11.75".
Eight gentle, large pictures of farm animals, including a lovely white draft horse and her baby, and a nice mother Pointer and her puppies; smaller drawings for each letter of the alphabet in burnt sienna and orange, which look to be by the same artist.
CONDITION: Very Good; corners rubbed and a little bumped, crease half inch in on front bottom corner, wrinkle line, not a crease, on front sheet more visible in side light; some publisher's offsetting, but pages quite clean; generally nice condition.#17555
Springfield, Mass USA: McLoughlin Bros., Inc. c.1900; glazed linen, 3 sheets forming 10 interior pages; coloured paintings outside; inside, contemporary black and white spreads alternate with full coloured, decorated "old-fashioned" spreads; large 10.25x7".
The children in the black and white pictures with plain graphics ride bicycles and wear short, plain dresses; the coloured pictures look more like romantic Victorian productions, perhaps from Valentine stock, with lutes and sheep with ribbons and bells. A lovely full colour portrait on the cover of a boy in knickers peering through a knothole attended by his patient dog. is on the front cover, a funny child dressed as a man reading a newspaper is on the back. All in all a nice collection of stock illustrations.
CONDITION: Good Minus; no longer folds evenly, very lightly frayed (1/32"), corners creased throughout book, quite darkened with a few small stains, some flecking on margins.#17527
New York: McLoughlin Bros. (1899); Little Linen Series, "Printed on Linen; three sheets folded glazed linen, making ten interior pages; on front cover, full colour chromo of seated elder sister sharing a book with her little brother dressed in a blue Fauntleroy suit, interior pages have about three red letters each accompanied by a small drawing; 4.5"x6.5".
Very deep chromolithos with heavy glazing intact and fine drawings, made possible by a finer quality of linen than was used later, although the book is not trimmed on the straight of the goods. The precise drawings give good examples of children's clothing of the time, a change from the woodcuts of the publisher's 1884 ABC. Q shows a portrait of an older Queen Victoria with the baby on her lap. Uncommon, in Worldcat.
CONDITION: Very Good Plus; only light wrinkles and several tiny pale spots (of about 1/32") on back keep this from being fine, our highest grade, no creasing, no fraying or spine wear, no flecking, intense colour, shiny thick original finish, interior pages and staples bright.#17529
USA: Peggy Cloth-Books, "copyright 1945 Made in USA", on back; "Peggy Cloth-Books, inc CORP 1945 on "verso", no other publishers mentioned, "Peggy Book Number 1" (on spine), a very early Peggy book, three doubled fine muslin sheets, folded and sewn, making 12 pages, pinked edges, 9x7".
Three seals on a stage hold up the ABC, inside most pages have humorous drawings for each letter, two to a page. With contemporary article on this book by Workbook magazine Vol. 16, No. 8, May 1951 laid in, at which point the publisher is still listed as "Peggy Cloth-Books, Inc". (Platt and Munk published these in the 60's) A piece of Americana in lovely condition.
CONDITION: Very Good Plus; no names, appears unwashed, pleasantly toned, light crease on front, crisp pinked edges intact and corners sharp, pale stain on first interior page, otherwise very nice. (In jpg, previous pages show through)#19017
San Francisco: Chronicle Books, 1994, 1st printing; white boards with proscenium and brightly dressed alphabet people dancing, seen from behind on the back, endpapers with little bright alphabet people design, in jacket identical to boards; oblong; 9.25x7; np
The alphabet people have skinny little legs and arms and imaginative coloured fabric costumes, stripes, flowers, stars, dots. They dance on backgrounds of all colours.. vibrant raspberry, turquoise, orange.
CONDITION: Fine in Fine jacket; as new; unclipped 11.95.#17334
New York: Golden Press, 1970, 1st printing, letter line, a Big Golden Book; laminated full colour illustrated boards, with toy horse on wheels on back and the same horse made of letters on front; decorative colour alphabet endpapers, 9.4x14.75"; np.
An alphabet to interest a small child, with many examples of each letter, all in colour.
CONDITION: Very Good; extremities worn through to card, all else very bright and clean.#14404
Houghton Mifflin, 1987, 1st printing. 9.25x11.2; c 52 pp.
Begins with a black and white picture of "A" with rocks tumbling around it, on verso," The A was in an avalanche" and so on through 26 graphic catastrophes. Just the alphabet book for a Van Allsburg collector.
CONDITION: Near Fine in Very Good jacket; in dw w one inch tear on spine and other smaller margin tears; unclipped 15.95.#11502
No publishing data on this copy. Probably a blank advertising sample: The Cotsen collection at Princeton has one of these with The Broadway Department Store text on the back. The book appears to be from around 1910. Three sheets of heavy card stapled making 10 interior pages. Cover with Mother seated with the many children in the background and her twins beside her, reading the poems, Alphabet Party text on verso, then two or three of each child's poems and illustrations per page, in green or red panels, plain back; 6.5x8.75"
The Alphabet Party: It was the Holiday Season and Ethel and Charles Bright were about to turn seven. Their mother proposed a toy party. Each little guest should meet her at the toy department of a big store, look over the toys, and make up a poem. The best poet would get the pick of toys. "After they got home, the children, with the help of their elders, made up their rhymes", and took the poems to read at the twins' birthday party. A very jolly red and green party book with great illustrations of 26 turn of the century toys: gramophones, wind-up lobsters, velocipedes, rubber elephants, racing cars.... Lively, bright illustrations and poems. Just the thing to encourage shopping and Christmas gift lists!
CONDITION: Good Plus, an easily erased light pencil name, two staples just beginning to rust, outside cover split to first staple, a little split at the top; darkening/even soil to back and margins; inside very fresh and bright with holiday colour.#19299
Helena, Montana: Riverbend Publishing, 2011, 1st; white boards with the A is for Ariel Fairy and a little elf with a palette, pale yellow endpapers, in jacket identical to boards, 8.75x11.25"; np. Cards: Bothell, WA: F. Y. Cory Publishers, Inc, 21230 Damson Road, Bothell, WA 98201
Book: An alphabet painted gradually by Cory (1877- 1972), which was not published until long after her death. This is the second, more colourful, of two recent publications. The Fairy Alphabet, painted during her cartoon period of the late 20's though the mid 50's while she was a Montana rancher with a large happy family, shows at first glance the delicate style of her turn of the century paintings and illustrations. But look more closely at those voluptuous fairies and funny elves! Cory's work has its own stamp: "too brazen" as she said, for St. Nicholas. Thus the small illustrations on the cards appear more traditional than the larger ones of the book, although they are reproductions of identical paintings. So, Cards: Lovely, fairy cards, blank inside, produced by the publishing company of Cory's grandson. Contained in a plastic sleeve with envelopes and an interesting biography.
CONDITION: New with Fine jacket; no marks or bumps. I looked through this once and am passing it on at Amazon's reduced price. Cards: Fine; as new, price in line with the set available from their website.#19529
Platt and Munk, Deluxe Edition, (1929 BAUM), 7th edition std.; orange cloth w large colour plate with brown stamped borders, 4to; c 74 pp.
A republication of Piper's Mother Goose 1922, Animals, and A.B.C. illustrated by Eulalie, C. M. Burd, and W. Gurney in deep colour. "Editions", perhaps meaning "printings", printed before 1939 (18th) are rare, and this one retains an earlier 20th c feeling in its colour quality and format.
CONDITION: Very Good Plus without jacket; bottom front corner bumped, spine a little faded, remnant of little bookstore stamp on rear fixed endpaper, all else clean and unwrinkled, generally in unusually nice condition.#14071