Adopt-a-Book 2013: Fires and Trains

The AAS curatorial team is just delighted by the response to our 6th annual Adopt-a-Book event, with over half of the selected “orphans” already adopted by generous supporters.  Thank you!  Below, please find one of the few titles for children still available from the online catalog as well as a railroad map from the cartography collection. The night of the event, the curators will be presenting fifty additional titles for adoption, so be sure to come to the Society for our evening event on Friday April 5, from 6:00 to 8:00. In order to keep up with online demand, we hope to post ten additional objects to the web catalog within the next several days.  What a lovely problem to have and we hope you enjoy reading the catalog and supporting the Society’s future acquisitions!


Peter Piper’s Tales. Danger of Fire. Albany: Richard H. Pease, 1844-1847.

Adopt me for $250

This is a rare lithographed picture book issued by Albany book and toy seller Richard H. Pease; he generally used wood engravings.  This text is a set of cautionary poems about the dangers of playing with or near the fire.  In this case, the obstinate Margaret threw some lighted scraps of papers on the floor, which wound up setting the house on fire, destroying her father’s savings, and disfiguring Margaret.  Given the lack of house insurance and the dependence upon open fireplaces for heat, these grim poems conveyed life lessons that needed to be learned if children were to survive into adulthood intact.

Geographically Correct County Map of the States Traversed by the Atchison, Topeka & Sante Fe Railroad. St. Louis: Woodward, Tiernan & Hale, 1877.

Adopt me for $200

This timetable for the Atchison, Topeka and Sante Fe Railroad includes on one side details of scenic highlights, information on connections, and listings of land for sale. The other side provides a (somewhat compressed) route map complete with an image of trains traversing the Great Plains.  The line was chartered in 1859 but did not reach the Kansas/Colorado border until 1873 due to work stoppages associated with the Civil War. In the 1870s, the line moved passengers, cattle, coal and supplies to and from Colorado and northern New Mexico.

You can search the online Adopt-A-Book catalog here.  Keep an eye out for the ten new additions to be added shortly. And remember, if you pre-adopt online, your entrance to the event on April 5th is FREE.  Otherwise, it is $10 at the door.  We look forward to seeing you in Worcester!

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