Family Treasure: Books Part 1

photo of older hardcover books on light wood bookshelf
{my new family treasure}

Last weekend, D and I traveled to a small town east of Saratoga Springs to visit with my uncle, aunt, cousins, and my grandmother. My brother and I call her, Nana. Nana is turning 98 in May! She is an amazing lady and is my role model for combining courage, fortitude, warmth and grace.

Our trip was more than just a social visit. This year Nana decided it was time to move in with family. Part of this moving process is finding new homes for many of the items she had in her house and apartments. I was so lucky to be able to receive several family treasures.

The heaviest gift was the bookshelf Nana received herself as a gift for her 16th birthday. It was custom built by her father (my great-grandfather) to especially fit the large art books! Hooray!

photo of old and new art reference books
{The large books perfectly}

The bookshelf is beautiful and fits just right against a wall in our bedroom. The first night it was in our bedroom, I was reading in bed and I noticed that the shelf and the old books have a distinct smell. That smell kept surfacing memories of childhood visits to Nana’s apartment.

The bookshelf also came with a collection of art books (so helpful!) and early twentieth century editions of young adult books. The book designer in me freaked out a little when I discovered what she had in her shelves! I will be sharing some treasures here and then more in future postings too. There is just so much to show! Are you ready?

photo of vintage and weathered hardcover cloth bound books
(a few very special books)

The small red unassuming book at the top of the stack is a 1907 edition of the classic literary work: MOBY DICK. It’s all done with letterpress printing. Check out the title page!

photo of ornate title page design of letterpressed Moby Dick book

Did your jaw just hit the ground? Because mine did. I never saw this book growing up. It must have been stored away from prying little hands. I’m very happy to have it now.

photo of early 1900's edition of Hans Brinker
{Hans Brinker)

I also now have an early edition of HANS BRINKER published by The Goldsmith Publishing Company of Cleveland. I cannot find the publication date, but it’s also a letterpress book, in rough condition, and I would guess it’s in the same era as MOBY DICK. I also love that Nana has signed the title page too. BIG SMILE.

There’s more surprises and treasures to come! Keep an eye out next week.

Think Spring! And just maybe a little warmth will come our way.