[To “Nineteenth-Century American Children & What They Read”]

New and True Stories for Children (1849)

Print culture in early 19th-century America was to a large extent a reprint culture. Authors learned of their popularity when their works were reprinted. Pieces from newspapers and other periodicals were reprinted (in in variations) for generations. Pieces from various gift books were reprinted in new collections; works for children were reprinted again and again, especially if the text and illustrations were available in the form of stereotype plates. A book good for one generation of children could make money for a publisher providing reading material for subsequent generations.

New and True Stories for Children is a monument to reprinting; the book was available as twelve eight-page chapbooks or as one 96-page … book. A book with two sets of page numbers: one number for the chapbook and one for the complete volume. Text was written around an eclectic collection of illustrations. And the book was reprinted and reprinted again: twice in the 1850s by its original publisher and in 1860, 1862, and 1867 by Howe & Ferry, who probably purchased the stereotype plates.

The result is … less than scintillating. Illustrations are generic and generally uninspired. Cardboard characters mouth cardboard pieces of information. Subjects fling themselves around, information about watches becoming a warning about the dangers of boiling water, complete with a descriptive anecdote. Some stories have questions at the bottom of a page or at the end of the book; though such questions would have been a familiar feature for contemporary readers, here they’re obviously used to fill out the page. And they’re often unspired: the questions for one story actually includes “Repeat the story.”

Race also is a feature. Native Americans exist here to be dismissed. They can’t build ships because they “do not know enough” and don’t like to work. (Though, the author asserts, “When they want to sail, they burn off a log of wood, and make it hollow by burning and scraping it with sharp stones”—which seems like almost as much work as building a European-style ship). They also have no chairs, which forces them to sit on the ground; and they have no clocks, so they have to guess at the time.

Why was the book reprinted so often? Cheapness. It was cheap to produce and could be sold cheaply, in copies which probably fell apart easily, though the 96-page hardcover is as sturdy as most books of the time. Functional, but not exactly an exciting read.

The text here is of the 96-page volume. In the book itself, page numbers for each chapbook appear at the top of each page. Page numbers for the book itself appear at bottom of the page, placed erratically. Page numbers in this transcription include both. Each chapbook has been assigned a letter, which appears before the chapbook’s page number: “c1” designates page one of the third chapbook. This page number is followed by the page number in the book: c1 | 17.

In 1849, New and True Stories for Children was noticed by a handful of periodicals for adults. In 1870, the later edition was savaged by Punchinello, which sarcastically wondered why children would want to read about fairies and ogres when they could read useful and informative books like New and True Stories (All Truth—No Fiction). It was another tiny skirmish in a battle about works for children that goes on to this day.

New and True Stories for Children. (New York: Samuel Raynor, 1849)

[title page]




Note.—This book has been prepared with great care, expressly for the entertainment and instruction of children.


No. 76 BOWERY.

[blank page]

[p. a1 | 1]


a ship with three masts

The Indians cannot build a ship. They do not know how to get iron from the mines, and they do not know enough.

Besides, they do not like to work, and like to fight better than to work.

When they want to sail, they burn off a log of wood, and make it hollow by burning and scraping it with sharp stones.

p. a2 | 2

a man paddles a canoe

It is called a Canoe. An Indian gets into it, and paddles off.

Canoes are often made of the bark of birch trees. These are called Birch Canoes, and are very light. A woman can carry one a mile or more on her head.

But they are not very strong. If one hits against a sharp stone, it has a hole made in it, and fills with water and sinks. Canoes will turn over easily. A white man said he would paddle an Indian’s canoe, and got in and stood up. Over he went into the water. This

p. a3 | 3

an empty rowboat

made the Indians laugh. You must sit strait [sic] up on the bottom of a canoe.

A boat is made of small timbers, covered with thin boards. Pegs of hard wood are stuck in the sides, to keep the oars in the right place when the men row.

Benches are made by putting short boards across the boat. When water gets in, the men must throw it out. They have something to get it out with, which is called a bailing dish.

A man can make a boat go with one oar, if he puts it at the stern, or hinder part of the boat, and moves it right. This is called sculling.

p. a4 | 4

a long rowboat

Canoes are moved with paddles, which are short oars not fastened by thole pins. It is hard work to paddle or row. When the wind blows the way an Indian wants to go in his boat, he will get a bush and stick it up in his canoe, and let the wind blow it along.

This is a rude sail. White men have good sails made of coarse cloth. These they can spread or tie up as they please.

How pretty a sail boat looks when it glides over the water!

But sail-boats are too small to hold

p. a5 | 5

a small boat with sails and three sailors

much. When men wish to send things from one city to another, to sell, they have larger vessels built.

Here is a sloop. It is so large that it can hold as much as two or three rooms in a house. In the bow, or fore-part, is a small room where the sailors sleep.

In the stern, or hinder part, is the cabin. There the Captain, the mate and the passengers have their beds.

Sloops are too small to hold as much as men often wish to send across the sea, to Europe, and other countries.

p. a6 | 6

a ship with two large sails

Here is a schooner. You may know it by its two masts, which have no long yards, or poles hung up by the middle.

Schooners are not so small as most sloops. They are made to sail in our rivers, or near our coasts. Sometimes one will go to some other land.


Q. Why do Indians not have ships? (See page 1).

Q. How is a canoe made? (p. 2.)

Q. What is a boat made of? (p. 3.)

Q. What is a sail? (p. 4.)

Q. Describe a sloop? [sic] (p. 5.)

Q. What has a schooner which a sloop has not? (p. 6.)

p. a7 | 7

a ship with three sails

Here is a Brig. It has two masts, like a schooner; but the yards are hung by the middle. The sails are square.

A brig is like a small ship, but it has not three masts. Brigs commonly sail where schooners do: but more of them go to distant parts of the world.

Sailors often go to countries where heathens live. Heathens are people who have no Bibles and no churches. Do you not think that a sailor ought to be a Christian? Yes, he ought to tell the heathen of God who made them.

p. a8 | 8

a ship with many sails

Sailors see the works of God, his wonders in the mighty deep.

A Ship has three masts. It is curious to see how many ropes it has, and every one has a good use.

There is a rope tied to the middle of each yard, or cross pole, to lift it up by. There is one at each end, to pull it round.

Then each sail has ropes to stretch it out, and others to draw it up.

These ropes hang down to the deck; and the sailors know where to find them, in the darkest night. Men make ships, but God makes men.

[p. b1 | 9]


a girl watches a boy raking

One warm day in the spring, Mary saw her brother in the garden at work. His father had just told him he might have a bed there, and plant it with seeds and keep it for his own.

Mary thought she would like to have one too; and went to her father and told him so. He said she might have a little

p. b2 | 10

a small tree beside a wooden fence

bed next her brother’s, and her sister another. The little girls then said they wanted one for the baby too.

The place where they had their beds was by the fence under a young tree.

The next thing that Mary wanted, was some seeds to plant. So she went to her father, and told him what she wished.

She had been told by her brother that seeds would grow: but she could not quite think it was true, and wished her father to tell her more about them.

So he took her on his lap, and said: “My little girl that is a wonderful thing. I will tell you what little I know about it.

p. b3 | 11

tree roots

“Seeds are of different kinds. Some are large, and some very small. There is a very small seed found in the land of Canaan. It is the mustard seed. Some very small seeds bear very large trees. It seems strange that a great oak tree can grow out of an acorn.

“Every seed has a little thing in it, which is ready to grow and make a tall plant. The roots of a tree look like the picture. But there are four things which a seed must have before it can grow. These are warmth, water, air, and darkness.

[“]You may put a seed into the ground,

p. b4 | 12

a rose

and give it sunshine to warm it, and let the air come to it. But if it is dry it will not grow. So if a seed is wet, but cold, it will not grow.

[“]Some plants live only one year, and must be planted every spring. Some live many years, as trees and the rose bush.

[“]When a seed begins to grow, a small green stalk rises up, and a little root grows down, like a white thread. Water is soaked up by little sponges, at the end of the root; and it runs up to the leaves, and drops little specks here and there, to make the flowers and fruit grow.

p. b5 | 13

a large sheaf of grain

“Seeds are very curious. Some of them are very useful. You eat some, Mary, and like them very much. Can you tell me the names of any?”

Mary could not; and he said to her, “rice is one kind.”

“Oh, is it?” said she. “I did not know that rice was seeds.”

“Yes it is,” said he; “and how pretty and white it is! It is so clean and pure I love to see it. It is very good for us to eat too. It does us good, and will not make us sick. And our bread is made of seeds called what.”

The picture shows a sheaf of wheat just cut.

p. b6 | 14

a metal trowel

Then he gave Mary some seeds of different plants, and told her what kinds of flowers they would bear. He said she might give half to her sister.

“Dear Father,” said Mary, “will you please to come and show us how to plant them?”

“O yes, my dear,” said he.

Then he made a little hole in the bed, and put a few seeds into her hand, and told her to drop them in. Then he told her to cover them up with about a spoonful of dirt.

A Trowel is a good thing to plant seeds with.

The little girls then smiled, and said

p. b7 | 15

a flower pot with dirt and sprouting plants

they could plant all the seeds alone: so their father went back into the house and left them. They put some into the ground, and some into flower pots.

After a few days, little Mary came to him, and took hold of his arm, and said:

“Dear Father, I want you to come out with me, and see what has grown up in my garden.”

There he found some little green plants just out of the ground, and told her they had come from some of the seeds she had planted. No man could make them grow. It was God who had done it.

p. b8 | 16

a plump plum

Her father also planted some seeds. Some bore pretty flowers. One of them grew up and made a long vine. It had great leaves and yellow flowers.

The children used to look at it often, and at last found a little round thing growing on it, which their brother said was a melon.

They ran in to tell their Father; and then he began to explain how the flowers of plants fall off, but leave a part of them, which is more important than the colored leaves. This is the seed box or seed vessel.

Apples, pears, grapes, and other fruits, are seed vessels.

[p. c1 | 17]


small boats sail on a rough sea near a small city

David was a very good friend of William’s. He used to let him play with his ducks. But now he had gone to live near the sea-shore.

One day William’s father told him he might go with him to spend a week with David. They took a long ride to a city, and at last came to the sea. O how much water there was there!

p. c2 | 18

a rowboat

David was very glad to see him.

“Come and see my boat,” said he.

So they ran down to the water-side, and there was a pretty little boat, tied with a rope, to a great stone.

“I should like to get in and sail,” said William; “but I cannot, till I ask my father and mother.”

He was not like some boys, who will do what they please, and not ask, is it right, or is it wrong? O no. He would not do so. His parents knew they could trust him, and would let him go and play where they would not, if he had not been so good.

p. c3 | 19

a crab

“O see that little thing in the water! What is it?” said William.

“Let me come, let me come,” said David.

Then he took off his shoes, rolled up his trousers, and went into the water.

“I have got a crab! I have got a crab!” said David; and he ran out and gave a loud laugh. When he came to the shore, he put the crab on the sand, and told William to come and look at it.

It was as small as the end of his thumb, and had eight legs, and two claws, which it held up in the air.

“Take care” said David; “do not tough it, or it will pinch you. See how it runs.”

p. c4 | 20

a net with a long handle

“It goes backwards, and now it goes sideways. What a strange thing a crab is?” [sic]

“I will tell you more about crabs,” said David.

“Crabs grow large, and then are very good to eat. Men catch them with scoop nets.”

“I do not know what a scoop net is,” said William.

“It is a net like a bag, fastened to a small hoop. The hoop is fastened to a long stick. A man goes out in a boat: and when he sees a crab, dips it up. But he must take care, or the crab will bite him with one of his claws.”

p. c5 | 21

a sturgeon

The next day, William saw two men in a boat going to catch crabs. By and by they caught one, and then one more.

One day William stood near the door, and saw a great fish jump out of the water. It seemed to be almost as large as a horse, and fell right down again, and sunk.

“O!” said he, “David! David! What great thing was that/”

“Only a sturgeon,” said he. “They come up very often. You need not be afraid of them, they never do any harm. They have only a small round hole for a mouth, with no teeth.

p. c6 | 22

a small fish

“There is some white stuff in their heads which makes excellent balls. They will bound as high as a house.”

William was almost afraid to wade in the water, when he knew the crabs were there. He thought they would bite him.

David said, he need not be afraid. He had gone into the water often, and never had been hurt.

William saw a little Pin-fish swimming near his feet. It was not as long as his little finger.

David told him about some of the fish which swam in the water there.

p. c7 | 23

a shark

The shark is a large fish with a wide mouth, and sharp teeth. Sometimes it comes to the top of the water; and then we can see its great fin stick up like a black stick.

We have to keep out of the way when we see a shark come. He is like a water tiger. He can bite off a man’s leg at one bite.

When men want to take a shark, they take a large hook, and stick a pound or two of meat on it, and tie the hook to a rope. This they drop down and catch the great fish.

p. c8 | 24

a fish with a large dorsal fin

In the deep water two men went in boats to catch black fish. These were very good to eat.

When William had been a long time by the water, and talked a great deal with his friend David, they went to the house, and found the table was set for dinner.

William was hungry, and thought the fish very good food. He thought how wonderful it is that God has made the great seas, and made fish to swim in them, which are good to eat.

[p. d1 | 25]


a box with a hinged lid

There was a boy, about eight years of age. he was fond of his tools, and had made boxes and other things, of wood, for himself and his friends.

One day when it was gold, he thought it was time to get his tools ready for the winter.

He knew that in the cold days he could not play in the garden, and would have to stay in the house.

p. d2 | 26

a claw hammer

So he went to his Tool-box, and there he found

His Hammer hung where he had put it long before. It was very good to drive nails with. he had sometimes driven tacks into the floor, to fasten the carpets down.

He had also found it very good to crack nuts with, for his little sisters. But he had to take care not to pound his fingers.

He had nails of four kinds: Some were very long, which he kept for his father, to drive into boards and timbers. The small ones were to fasten little boxes with.

p. d3 | 27

a drawknife

A Drawing Knife has two handles, and is to be drawn towards you when you use it. It is used by coopers, when they shave hoop poles to make hoops for barrels.

His drawing knife he could use for a plane. It is best for boys to have a guard made of wood, so that they can not cut themselves.

One day he was walking with his father. “O!” said he, “what is that boy doing?”

“He is shaving down a hoop pole,” said his father, “to make a hoop. I will buy you a drawing knife.”

And that was the way he got one.

p. d4 | 28

a hatchet

He had a Hatchet, but it was lent to him by a friend. His father said, “I am afraid you will cut your hand.” So he gave it back, and would not keep it in his box.

His father told him this story.

“When I was a boy, I said to my uncle one day, ‘How did you get your finger cut off?’ and he said, ‘I was chopping a stick one evening, and the hatchet cut off my finger.’ ”

A hatchet has a broad head of iron, with a sharp edge, and a wooden handle.


Describe a hatchet.      Repeat the story.

p. d5 | 29

an awl with a thick handle

The Gimlet is made to bore holes with in wood. It has a wooden handle and an iron rod, with a screw at the end, and a hollow with sharp edges.

The best gimlets have the hollow winding round up nearly to the handle. This lets the dust of the wood come out, and give room for more.

A few years since, all our tools were made in England. We now make better gimlets, and some other tools than the English do.


Describe a gimlet.

Who makes the best gimlets.

p. d6 | 30

a compass and a circle

Compasses are a very good plaything as well as an useful tool.

He liked to take them, and stick one point into a board, and turn the other round till it made a perfect circle.

Then he would make a pretty star in it, by marking curves from one part of the circle to the other, each passing through the centre or middle.

Compasses, or Dividers, are very good to use in some kinds of study at schools and colleges.

p. d7 | 31

a hand saw

This is one of the best tools in the box. He could take a piece of board, and lay it on a block or a stair, with one end out, and saw it off in two minutes.

If a boy can get a brass back saw, he will find it a very good and safe tool. The teeth are fine, so that it will go easily, and cut smooth. The brass makes it stiff, so that it will not bend.

A Mitre box is a good thing to lay a stick in if you want to saw it off. You must ask a carpenter what it is.


Describe a saw.

p. d8 | 32

a file

A File is a long piece of hard steel, with marks all over it, to make it rough.

It is good to rub down any thing made of iron. The Little Carpenter could sharpen the teeth of his saw with his file when it was dull.

When he saw all his tools hung up nicely in the box, he felt very glad. he thought, “I know how to use them all. I made this box, and fixed up the straps to hang them on. How glad I am I have been a good boy and kept all my tools.”

[p. e1 | 33]


a woman enters a room where another woman watches a woman ironing

Little Mary sometimes went into the Kitchen, to learn how useful work is done.

She did not meddle with things, and tried not to be in anybody’s way. All liked her because she was so still and good.

If she asked questions, they would tell her the names of the things, and why they did so and so.

p. e2 | 34

a wooden bucket

She had heard her mother say it was very good to learn how to cook, and wash, and iron, because they are very useful.

She did not intend to be an ignorant or a lazy woman.

Water is an excellent thing. It is very useful in a kitchen. Let us think about it a moment. It is pure like glass or crystal, when it is clear; it is good to drink, for ships to sail in, and for fish to swim in.

It is also good to wash us and our clothes. Do not forget to wash your hands and face every day, and your feet too if you can, but at least once a week.

It is well for us that we have pails

p. e3 | 35

a large basket with a handle

and tubs, made tight, that they will hold water. They are made of staves, which are bound with hoops.

A Basket is made of sticks woven in a curious manner. The basket maker begins at the bottom. He puts the largest sticks across one another, and then weaves a small one among them. When he gets to the end of it, he takes another, and so he goes on till he has done.

Look at baskets, and you will see how the handles are fastened in different ways.

If you want to carry any thing in a basket, do not drag it on the ground,

p. e4 | 36

a metal rod with hanging hooks

that will wear it out. Indians make baskets of split wood, and spot them with paints of different colors.

The Steelyard is used to weigh butter and flour, and other things. They are put into a kettle, which is hooked to the steelyard. Then the weight is hung on at the other end.

Hold the steelyards up by the upper hook, and then move the weigh [sic] till it balances.

Then see what figure is marked on the iron rod, and that will show how many pounds it weighs.

Sometimes they weigh little babies with steelyards. They tie them in a cloth, or put them into a basket.

p. e5 | 37

a set of scales

These are often used for weighing things in a kitchen or store. Butter or cheese or something else is put into one of the scales, and the weights into the other.

The small weights are marked I, II, III, and so on, to show how many ounces they are. the large weights are marked for pounds.

Learn this; it is the table of Avoirdupois weight.

16 drachms make 1 ounce,

16 ounces 1 pound,

28 pounds 1 quarter,

4 quarters 1 hundred,

20 hundred 1 ton.

p. e6 | 38

fireplace bellows

This was the most curious thing which Mary saw in the kitchen. She could not tell how it could blow the fire so well.

It is made of two boards, with leather nailed tight all round them, and an iron pipe at the end, called the nose.

Each board has a handle. You pull the handles apart and push them together, and the wind comes out of the nose. But how does it get in?

Turn the bellows over and you will see a round hole, with a loose wooden cover. When you pull the handles, the air lifts up the cover and goes in. When

p. e7 | 39

a round sieve

you push them, it shuts the cover and goes through the nose.

A Sieve is a broad wooden hoop with a fine net at the bottom, made of wire or hair. It is used to sift or to strain things through.

When a woman is using a sieve, see how useful it is. If flour has lumps in it, sift it, and the flour will fall through as white as snow. The lumps will stay in the sieve.

When sweetmeats are made, you may strain the juice through a sieve, and then make jelly of it.

p. e8 | 40

a funnel
A TUNNEL. [sic]

This is a curious thing made of tin. It is large at the top, small at the bottom, and has a pipe there to put into a bottle.

You may try to fill a bottle with water from a cup, but it will spill over. Put a tunnel into the bottle, and then you can pour it all in, and not spill a drop.

When you want to pour out of a large hole into a small one, you must take great care, or you will spill it.

[p. f1 | 41]


two men shear sheep

William lived in a large town. One day he set out to go and stay with a good old man in a small village.

The old man was the minister of the place, and had an old brown house, with some trees around it.

How glad William was when he saw

p. f2 | 42

not a robin, but a pigeon

the house! He thought there was plenty of room to play.

“How do you do,” said the minister, as he came to the gate. The good lady gave him some cake.

He looked out, and saw the fruit trees in the yard. The cherries were red, and a robin came, to get one. He took it in his bill, and then flew off to eat it.

“Do you want to walk to the yard, and see the fowls?”

“Yes Sir,” said William. So he took his hat, and went to the yard.

In the wood house, the fowls had a

p. f3 | 43

a sheep and a lamb

good place to roost. There was a beam over his head where they could sit and sleep all night.

He came to a door which led to the barn yard. He could not push it open at first.

He put his finger through a hole, and lifted a small latch, which rose up, and open flew the door.

“Bah, bah, ba,” cried some sheep and lambs, which had their bed there. They got up and ran away for fear.

He afterwards saw the sheep sheared. Look at the first page and see how they cut off their wool to make clothes of it.

p. f4 | 44

cow and calf

In the barn was the old cow with her calf.

“Ah,” thought William, “I shall like you best of all, you nice little calf.”

“Moo,” said the cow, when he came and stood near her. She was very kind to her calf, and sometimes licked its brown back with her long tongue.

William looked up and there he saw a great heap of hay. It was put there to feed the cow and horse.

p. f5 | 45

horse and colt

The old horse stood all this time in his stable. He ate his hay, and sometimes put his head out of a window, to see what was in the barn yard.

William thought he would ask the minister if he might sometimes pull down some hay, and feed the sheep, and cow, and horse.

The minister said he might. So he gave them some hay. They all seemed thankful.

“Bah,” said the sheep, “moo,” said the cow.

p. f6 | 46

a box turtle

One day William was in a corn field with a boy. “O, what is that? See there!” said he.

“It is a turtle,” said the boy[;] and they ran after it and made it stop.

“Will it bite?” said William.

“Let me see, it may be a snapping turtle.” Then he put a stick to its mouth, but it would not bite it. Then they took it up in their hands, and carried it, and then put it down.

p. f7 | 47

a sea turtle

“It is not a pretty turtle, it has no spots on its back, and it is too large to carry home. Let us go.” So they left it, and it began to walk away.

Turtles are of two sorts. Some live on land, and some in water. Any body can tell them apart by their toes. The water turtles have webbed feet like ducks, or else legs like fins.

Some sea turtles are as large as a door, and are very good to eat. There is a sort which have beautiful shells, that are made into combs.

p. f8 | 48

a bird perched beside a basket-like nest hanging from a branch

In the street was a tall elm tree. William was near it one day, and saw a bird fly into it. It was as red as fire.

He looked, and saw a nest hanging from a branch. It was very high from the ground, and swung when the wind blew.

The bird is called a Firebird, or Oriole. It makes its nest with much art. Once a lady let some lace drop on the grass, and could not find it. In the autumn it was found woven into a Firebird’s nest.

[p. g1 | 49]


an old man talks to four children

Mary went to school, and had a kind teacher. She had a little desk, and a chair to sit by it, with nothing to trouble her.

She had a slate, with a sponge tied to it by a string. She had a pencil too and a ruler, a book to write in, and a map to look at when she read about the world.

p. g2 | 50

a desk with a slanted top

She had a list of studies on a paper, so that she knew what she was to do.

One warm day she came in with a smile on ehr face, and took her seat. She took up her spelling book, and spelled over all the words in one row.

Then she shut that up, and took a pretty book, which she had to read in. She read a long time in the “Child’s Book on the Soul.”

She liked those books very much.

Then she took her slate, and first made some lines on it, and then began to write.

p. g3 | 51

a snail

When she had written for some time, she took her slate to her teacher. He said she was a good girl, and had done well.

After that, she was to take her box of shells, and put them in their places. This she liked very much; and she spent a good while with them.

Snails have thin shells, and live on land. Some are good to eat.

Her teacher had told her what kind of creatures live in shells. They are soft, and have no bones.

p. g4 | 52

an open oyster shell

The clams and oysters are such. They have a neck near the hinge of the shells, by which they take their food. They are very good to eat, and so are some other shell fish.

There is a queer little creature called the Hermit Snail. It has no shell of its own, but likes to have one to live in, and gets into one with its legs out, and runs with it on its back[.]

Mary next put all the shells in their places very neatly, and laid the box away.

Then she took her little Hymn book, and began to read a hymn. She liked it

p. g5 | 53

a chair with a painted back and rush seat

so much, that she forgot she was in school, and began to sing it.

The girls in the school heard a soft voice singing in a corner, and turned round and began to smile.

By and by, her little sister came in. She had a table and a chair by the side of her, and there she sat down.

Mary then gave up her lessons, and kindly said she would help her. So she ruled her slate, and showed her how to hold her pencil, and to make the marks.

Then she took a little book, and made her say the letters, and helped her to spell a few short words.

p. g6 | 54

a round nest with three eggs

When it was time for the boys and girls to go to play, Mary went out with her sister. They had a pleasant garden to walk in, and there were flowers, some red, some blue, and some yellow. A little bird had her nest on a high tree.

They walked on the grass, and played for some time, till they heard the bell ring. Then they went back to the school, and took their seats again.

Her father had told her often to think of God when she was alone, and to pray to Him. And so she did often silently, in school.

Mary had a lead pencil to draw with,

p. g7 | 55

rose and rosebud

and a camel’s hair pencil to color her pictures. This she called her paint brush.

Her teacher told her to learn to draw well first. he would not let her measure, but told her to judge, by looking where to make the marks.

Then he said she must learn to shade the parts. First, she must put on a light thin shade, then another over it, when it was dry.

Last of all he told her how to color it. But I must tell more about it in a larger book. She liked to draw roses.

p. g8 | 56

Mary liked to paint a Violet. She had one to copy, and her teacher told her how to begin[.]

“When you wish to draw,” said he, “make a dot where the bottom of the picture should be, and then a dot for the top.”

“Next you may make dots for the sides, and one in the middle. Draw one of the longest lines where it should be. Then another and another. Draw them lightly at first, so that you can rub out what is not right with India rubber.

“Drawing,” said he, “will make you notice things more. We ought to look at the things God has made, very carefully, and very often. The smallest fly and leaf is full of wonders.”


What should you do first when you begin to draw a picture?

What next?

Should you measure or trace over any thing?

Why is it useful to learn to draw?

[p. h1 | 57]


a large house with outbuildings, a cow, and a plow

One day when it was warm, William and his brother set out to go a haymaking. Their friend james, who went to school with them, had told them he should go to his father’s farm to make hay.

They said they thought it would be good sport; and James told them he should like to ahve them go too.

p. h2 | 58

a long-handled scythe

Then they got leave, and set out with him. They had to take a long walk, but it was over green grass; and the birds sang in the trees as they went along.

They saw a man with a scythe in his hands, which he swung before him near the ground. The long and sharp blade cut the grass near the roots, and the sun dried it as it lay on the ground.

Then James got a pitchfork, and told the boys how to use it. “Now,” said he, “you know that grass is very wet when it is fresh. It must be dry to make good hay. So take each of you a pitchfork, and do as you see me do.”

p. h3 | 59

a man and a boy look at a large tree

Then they went to work and threw the grass out, and let it dry in the sun.

By and by the boys grew tired. When it was twelve o’clock, the men called to them that it was time to go to dinner.

Then they went to an old tree, which grew near the barn, and sat down in the shade. The wind blew on them, and felt very fresh and cool.

What a good dinner they ate, leaning against the old tree! It was only bread and meat, with some water to drink.

p. h4 | 60

a rake

But the boys were hungry, and felt happy, as folks do when they had done some useful work.

Late in the day, some clouds rose in the sky, till they grew thick. Then the men said it was going to rain.

All of them then took rakes, and ran to rake up the hay as fast as they could. The men had laughed at the boys before, for being awkward; but now they were glad of their help.

William and his brother worked hard. So did James. They raked up a good deal of the hay, and made several little stacks, or haycocks, so that the rain would run off from them and not soak in.

p. h5 | 61

a duck and four ducklings in water

But soon it began to rain, and then they ran to the Farm house and took seats. The shower came on with much wind. The ducks liked it.

The rain beat against the house; but the boys were safe, and did not get wet.

There was a man who lived in the house, with his wife, and some boys and girls. They were all kind, and gave them something to eat. They went about the house, and saw the room where the farmer kept his seeds.

p. h6 | 62

a large caterpillar

When the storm had passed, the boys went into the garden. There they walked, and saw some pretty flowers. Then they went to the bed where the sweet herbs grew.

On one of them they saw a great green caterpillar, with yellow spots on it.

“O,” said William, “that will bite us.”

“No,” said James, “do not be afraid, no caterpillar can hurt you.”

So they did not hurt the caterpillar, but ran about the walks, till it was time to go home.

p. h7 | 63

a moldboard plow

The boys passed by the place where the farmer kept his tools. There were ploughs, harrows, spades, and other implements. Some farmers take good care of such things. They will last a great deal longer, if they are kept dry, and not left out in the rain.

The chickens came out from the barn after the storm. They ran round the field, and were very gay and lively.

The birds began to sing once more, and the sun shone bright.

p. h8 | 64

a rake shaped like a capital A

the boys then set out to go home. They went along by a green path, which led across the field. The new hay smelt sweet, and the boys were glad that they had done so much useful work.

When they got home, they told their friends how much they had done; how they sat on the grass to eat, and how they ran with all their might, when the rain began to fall.

Useful work makes young folks feel glad.

[p. i1 | 65]


two butterflies

One day little Mary was sitting alone by the window. Her father came in, with a little thing on his hand[.]

“Come here,” said he, ” see what I have brought to show you.” She saw it was a Miller.

“I found it in the street,” said he.

p. i2 | 66

a moth

“It had come down from a tree, and was eating its dinner. What do you think it likes to eat?”

“It loves sweet things. It was sucking a piece of apple skin.”

“Now,” said he, “I will show you how it drinks. The Miller cannot eat. It has no mouth. The Butterflies are so too.” Then he put some water into a spoon, and some sugar.

He took a drop of this on his hand, and put the Milelr near it. “Don’t you see a little string on its head, curled up like a shaving? See what it does with that.”

p. i3 | 67

a butterfly

Then the Miller stretched it out, and put the end of it into the sweet water. “It is hollow,” said he, “like a pipe. The Miller sucks with it.”

It soon sucked up the water and flew away.

One day he found a Butterfly, and brought it home.

“Here Mary,” said he, “you can see this Butterfly’s little pipe. You may feel it. Be very careful—do not hurt it.

“Do not rub its wings. They are covered with little scales. There are more than I could count in a long time. If the scales get off, it cannot fly.

“When you have fed it, let it go.”

p. i4 | 68

two leaves with holes in them

Oh, how Mary was pleased. When the Butterfly wanted to go, she opened the window, and it flew away.

Then her father told her where Millers and Butterflies come from.

Said he, “They are all first in little eggs, about as big as the head of a pin. In the warm weather these hatch, and little worms come out, called caterpillars.

They eat and grow, and their skin comes off. Then they grow more, and their skin comes off again. Then they creep to some safe place, under the back of a tree, or into a hole,a nd a skin grows all over them.

p. i5 | 69

a chrysalis and a large caterpillar

Some of them wind silk all round them before they changed.

The Silkworm does this and makes a cocoon.

This is the most useful kind of caterpillars. It eats mulberry leaves. Children do not like them at first: but when they see that they do no harm, and keep still, and wind silk so prettily, they like to feed them.

A young Silkworm is so small you can hardly see it. twenty of them can feed all day on one leaf. But when they are four weeks old they are as large as your finger.

Then they eat so fast, that boys and girls get tired with running to pick mulberry leaves.

p. i6 | 70

a large cocoon

Silkworms make a fine thread come out of their mouths, when they are full grown. They fasten it to sticks, or something else, and hang themselves on it in the air.

Then they wind it round and round them, till they look as if they were shut up in a glass ball. By and by you cannot see them.

Then the worm changes to a Chrysalis, and stays there a few months. By and by a drop of something comes out of its mouth, which makes a hole through the cocoon, and out walks a Miller.

p. i7 | 71

a butterfly emerges from a chrysalis

The silk is wound from the cocoon, and afterwards spun and woven.

Some of the Caterpillars hang themselves by the tail; and, when the wind blows, it swings them about.

By and by the skin cracks open; and what do you think comes out? There you will see a little thing creep out, all wet. In a few minutes it gets dry, and spreads out four large wings and flies away.

This is a Butterfly or a Miller. How wonderful it is, that it knew how to fly the first time it tried! God makes it wise enough to go through all its changes, and do all right the first time.

p. i8 | 72

a moth lays eggs

A Butterfly flies in the day time; and when it rests, holds its wings up. A Miller, or moth, flies in the evening, and holds its wings flat while at rest; so do Night Millers. You may know them apart by this.

The chrysalis of a Butterfly has points or corners to it. The chrysalis of a Milelr is round and smooth.

When a Butterfly or Milelr has lived a few days or weeks, it lays its eggs, and soon dies. These eggs hatch into worms; and so they change and die every year.

[p. j1 | 73]


a man, a girl, and two boys sit or stand around a table

These should be in every parlor. They are better than any kind of furniture. Oh, how pleasant it is to belong to a happy family!

But one bad child can spoil the happiness of his brothers and sisters. He can bring down the grey hairs of his parents with sorrow to the grave.

A child who gets angry, may strike

p. j2 | 74

an open door

somebody very hard when he is a strong man, and kill him. then, when he is put into a prison, and feels the chains on his hands and feet, waiting to be taken to the court-house, or to be hung, how sorry he will feel that he did not keep down his anger when he was young!

How many pieces of wood are there in the door of your room? A boy must learn a good while in a carpenter’s shop, before he can make the parts of a door right, so that they will fit well and not show any cracks.

A door is hung on hinges. A hinge is a curious thing. Did you ever look at one, to see how it moves?

p. j3 | 75

a large old-fashioned lock

The Romans often made their doors narrow at the top, and then they would shut themselves. Think about it, and you can see why.

When you open your father’s door, think: God gave me my father, and a welcome place in this house.

Locks are made of iron. They are often put into the door, so that you cannot see them. A Padlock hangs outside.

A lock is a small iron box, with a long piece of iron, called the bolt. There are notches in it,a nd springs to catch in them, and hold it where it happens to be.

Nothing but the right key will raise the springs and push the bolt. The rea-

p. j4 | 76

a padlock

son is, that there are bits of iron sticking up in the lock, which would stop any thing else from moving.

The Chinese have locks very different from ours.

A Key has three parts: the ring, the stem, and the wards. The wards are made so as to fit it with the irons in the lock, so that they do not hit the key, but let it pass between them.

Look at the end of the wards, and you will see where one part rubs against a spring, to raise it, and the other against the bolt to push it.

Sometimes in a hotel or tavern the

p. j5 | 77

a chair with a carved back

keeper has a key made very thin at the wards, so that it can slip through all his locks. This is called a Master Key. With it he can go into any room while his lodgers are away.

Indians and Turks have no chairs. They sit on the ground. Some nations have chairs carved out of logs of wood.

The Chinese make chairs of pieces of cane. They are very good for children. A boy or girl can carry one across the room with one hand.

Some of our chairs are flag-bottomed. Flags are cut, and dried in the sun, and then twisted and woven to make the

p. j6 | 78

a table with a drawer

seat. The cane-bottomed chairs are very neat.

Some nations set their dishes on the ground when they eat. The Turks have a small table close to the ground, and help themselves with their fingers.

When they read or write, they hold their books or paper on their knees.

Tables are made of wood, and some of them are covered with marble. Mahogany trees grow in the West Indies. The best are cut in Guatemala.

Cherry trees are often made into tables,a nd sometimes black walnut trees. The cheapest and whitest tables are made of pine.

p. j7 | 79

a metal candlestick

Candlesticks are made of iron, brass, or silver. Iron easily gets rusty. Brass shines like gold when it is well rubbed: but it makes the hands smell bad, and soon grows dull. Grease turns it green.

Candles are made of tallow, spermaceti, or wax. Dipped candles are made thus:—Hang strings of cotton yarn across a stick, and dip them into a kettle of melted tallow.

Take them right out, and cool them. Then dip them so again and again, till they are covered with tallow enough to make candles.

p. j8 | 80

a painted sideboard

Sideboards are made of mahogany. They have small cupboards in them to hold plates, knives and forks, and what you choose.

Some people keep bottles of wine in them, and other liquors, with glasses to drink them in. Then they ask their friends to go to the sideboard and drink.

But I would not have a drop of such bad things in the sideboard or the house. By one glass of liquor you may perhaps lead a person to become a drunkard. Liquor has ruined many a happy family.

God has turned many drunkards to sober men. Let us thank him for it.

[p. k1 | 81]


a wren perched on a branch

“Now, Mary,” said her father, “the Spring has come, and your little Wren will soon be here. It has spent the Winter in warm south countries.”

One morning she heard it sing, and it began to pick up sticks and hairs to make its nest in the great tree.

one day she asked him to tell her more about the birds. “Come here, my dear daughter,” said he, “and sit on my knee.” So she sat with him and he began to talk to her.

p. k2 | 82

an eagle perched on a rock

“Dear Mary,” said he, “there are six kinds of birds. I want you to know them apart, so that you can tell, when you see a bird, what kind it belongs to.

“After you have learned the six kinds, then you must learn the sorts. Every kind has many sorts.

“The first kind are those which eat meat. They have long and crooked bills and claws. They are so sharp, that they can cut or tear meat with them, as if they were iron hooks or knives.

“The Eagle is among them. So are the Falcon, Hawk, and Owl.

p. k3 | 83

three chickens and a chick confront a hawk

“There are many sorts of Hawks. The Fish-Hawk lives near the water, and flies over it, to look for fish. When it sees one, it falls down like a stone, and catches it.

“If a hungry Eagle sees him, he flies after him. The Hawk screams and drops the fish, and so the Eagle gets it and eats it.

“The Pigeon-Hawk catches pigeons; the Sparrow-Hawk eats sparrows.

“Look at the picture, and you will see a Hen-Hawk. It has come down to catch a little chicken. See how bold the Hen is. See how angry she appears.

p. k4 | 84

bird sits on a rock

“the second kind of birds are the Sparrows. They like to perch on trees. Some eat seeds and some eat insects.

“there are many sorts. The Robin, Thrush, Martin, Swallow, and Wren belong to the Sparrow kind. So do all the singing birds.

“They have three toes before and one behind. The hind toe is long,a nd helps them to hold on to the twigs of trees.

“When you see one of these harmless birds, do not want to kill it, nor to put it in a cage. Give it some crumbs of bread,and it will sing to pay you for its dinner.

p. k5 | 85

a parrot on its perch

“The climbing birds are the third kind. They have a toe like a thumb, so that they can take hold of a stick better than other birds.

“The Woodpeckers have strong bills, and make little holes in trees to pick out worms. They make large holes for their nests.

“A bad boy once got up to a Woodpecker’s nest, and put in his hand to steal the eggs. But a black snake had got there first, and sucked the eggs and lain down. When the boy felt the snake he was so much afraid, that he fell down to the ground, and hurt himself.”

p. k6 | 86

a turkey with a spread tail

“The fourth kind of birds are the Fowls.

“They have strong legs, so that they can run fast; and weak wings, so that they cannot fly very far.

“The Hens are Fowls, and so are the Turkeys, Peacocks, Guinea-Hens, Grouse, Partridges, and Quails.

“See how the Turkey-Cock spreads his tail and struts. He is a very vain bird. The Peacocks are more beautiful and more vain. But they cannot sing, they make a coarse rough noise which nobody likes to hear.

p. k7 | 87

a crane beside water

“The wading birds have long legs and necks, and live near the water. They like to wade in and catch fish.

“They stick their legs out behind when they fly. Some of them eat worms and some of them seeds.

“The Dutch people like Storks.—When I was in Holland i saw their nests on the trees and houses. There is a law against killing them.

“They eat a kind of worm which digs into their dikes, and makes them fall. This lets in the water and drowns people.

p. k8 | 88

a swan on water

“The sixth kind is the swimming birds. They have skin between their toes. This is called web-footed. It helps them to swim.[”]

“What birds swim on the water?”

“The Ducks, Geese, and some others. The Swan is the most beautiful of them. It is as white as snow, and has a long neck.

“They are sometimes kept tame, to swim in brooks and ponds. In Paris they swim in the king’s garden, and often eat cake out of the hands of little boys and girls.”

[p. l1 | 89]


a woman and a boy on a busy street

There was a little boy. We may call him James. He wanted to learn how a wheelbarrow is made.

He got a wheel and fastened it to a stick. Then he drove a nail into the stick, and hung a basket on it, and wheeled it about the yard.

One day a kind lady, who had given him apples, was going to live in another

p. l2 | 90

a large wagon and a two-wheeled cart

house. He carried some of her things in his hands, and then took his wheelbarrow and helped her all he could.

Once he went to a wheel-wright’s shop, to see him make a wagon; and his father told him what kinds of wood he used, to make the hubs and spokes of the wheels, and how he put the iron bands on the wheels.

He knew how easy it is to move light things with a wheel; and he saw that it must be much better for a horse to draw a load in a wagon than to carry it on his back.

p. l3 | 91

a wooden wheelbarrow

James wanted to wheel his sister in a man’s wheelbarrow one day. “No, no,” said his father; “you will let her fall over.” So he would not try it, but asked his father what was the danger.

Then he showed him how it would all rest on the wheel when he raised the handles.

“Is there any thing like a lever about a wheelbarrow,” said his father. “O yes, sir,” said James. “The axle; and the wheel is the prop, the load is the weight, and the power is your hands.”

p. l4 | 92

a mill on a stream

James had been told about water-mills, and thought them very curious things. “There are two kinds,” said his father.

“A wheel is made almost as large as a house, with boards on it, so that when a stream of water runs against it, it will turn round. The axis is a great timber, and turns round with it. A cog wheel is fastened to it; and that turns other wheels.

“In the mill is one large round stone moving over another. Above them is a large square tunnel, into which the wheat or corn is placed. It drops down, and is ground to flour or meal.[”]

p. l5 | 93

a windmill

James’s father had travelled in holland. “Oh,” said he, “I wish you could see the Windmills in that strange country.

“You must remember that Holland was once covered by the sea. The peo[ple] made great banks of earth to keep the water out, and then built houses and planted gardens and made canals. They worked hard, saved their money, and so grew rich.

“Some water would leak in, and they dipped it out. But they got tired of that; and made them windmills, and caused them to move pumps, which pump it out.”

p. l6 | 94

an hourglass and a mantel clock with the hands at 11:31

In old times some people used to keep time with tubs of water. They made holes in them, so that the water would run out in an hour or a day, as they pleased.

“Then they used fine sand in a thing called an Hour-glass. The sand runs from the upper part into the under part in an hour. Then turn it and it willrun back in another hour.

“But they did not want to stand to watch the time to turn it. So some one made a clock.”

James’s father bought him a clock which would go; and he saw how the weights moved the hands.

p. l7 | 95

a pocket-watch, with the hands at 12:43

A Watch is moved by a spring. A clock ahs a weight hanging to a long string, and a pendulum with a rod, swinging this way and that. So you could not put a clock into your pocket.

Indians can not tell the time very well. They look at the sun or the moon, and then guess about it.

See if you can tell me what time it is by this watch. What is it when the hour hand is between 6 and 7, and the minute hand between 2 and 3? How many times does the minute hand pass the hour hand in a day and a night?

“James,” said his father, “do not shut up hot water too tight, and take care when it is over the fire.

p. l8 | 96

a metal tea kettle and a steamboat

“A lady was boiling coffee one day, and kept the cover on the coffee-pot too long. When she took it off, the water turned to steam, and flew up in her face, and took all the skin off.”

Do you know how they make the wheels of a Steamboat move? They shut up water tight in a great kettle and heat it. Then they open a hole which has a heavy iron bar in it, the steam lifts it, in trying to get out. That bar moves a lever, and the lever moves the wheels.

Machines are wonderful things. But remember that God made the things which they are made of, and the men who make them.

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