The Story of My Childhood as Told in Photos of Books: Part 2

The Project

As a result of a spring-fever cleaning urge, I recently sorted and cataloged my books using the Libib app and website. Near the end of my project, I had a nice time going through a large box of books that I kept from my childhood.

Just from looking at the books, it was fun and enlightening to see who I was when I was young, and to think about the ways I have and have not changed.

Vintage Books

These children’s novels and basic readers hail from the school days of my parents and grandparents.

A collection of vintage children's novels and basic readers

I must have come with an innate liking for history and “vintage” things, because I loved reading all of these books during my own elementary school years.

Note the five rather battered, yet lovely green hardback Bobbsey Twins novels—plus a sixth, which is missing its cover. These novels all have copyright dates from the 1920s and 1930s. In these stories, the main characters are two sets of fraternal twins (Bert, Nan, Freddie, and Flossie), all siblings, whose dialogue includes words such as “Hark!” and whose parents are always referred to as Mr. and Mrs. Bobbsey.

I also enjoyed reading the Dick and Jane and Alice and Jerry basic readers, which were full of stories about the respective title characters’ adventures growing up in the New England countryside. I remember being fascinated by the descriptions and illustrations in one chapter of Neighbors on the Hill as Dick and Jane went maple sugaring in the autumn.

The Family Treasury of Children’s Stories in three volumes were also a favorite, as they contained all kinds of now-politically-incorrect stories ranging from fairy tales and nursery rhymes to accounts of famous men and women in history, extracts from English literature, and retellings of classical mythology.

I credit many of these books with instilling in me a very 1950s sense of patriotism and optimism that persists to this day.

Advertisements

The Story of My Childhood as Told in Photos of Books: Part 1

The Project

As a result of a spring-fever cleaning urge, I recently sorted and cataloged my books using the Libib app and website. Near the end of my project, I had a nice time going through a large box of books that I kept from my childhood.

Just from looking at the books, it was fun and enlightening to see who I was when I was young, and to think about the ways I have and have not changed.

The Horse-Crazy Kid

Clearly, I not only loved riding our family horses when I was young (I belonged to a 4-H club called the Portneuf Posse), I loved reading books about horses. The Black Stallion series by Walter Farley was an especial favorite, but I would read any book about a girl (or guy) and her (or his) horse.

A photo of kid and young adult books about horses

The Kid Who Loved Old West and Outdoor Adventure

At one point in my youth—(4th grade was Idaho History year and we played a lot of Oregon Trail in the school computer lab)—I would have gladly time-traveled to live in the 1800s of the American Old West. My absolute favorite book from this category was Moccasin Trail by Eloise Jarvis McGraw.

I also loved reading outdoor adventure and survival stories, and if you had asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have replied that I wanted to be a hermit and live alone off the land in the mountains.

A photo of kid and young adult books about the Old West