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  • Tags: Picture books

“The Parrot Girl.” In Naughty Girl’s and Boy’s Magic Transformations

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Metamorphic picture books for children date back to the eighteenth century. They usually lacked a narrative and focused instead on often silly interchangeable pairings of animal or human bodies. McLoughlin Brothers improved on this format with its…

Children's Favorite, Animals & Birds

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First published in 1866, this copy of Children’s Favorite Animals & Birds was retained as a plate house copy by McLoughlin Brothers and was filed in its archives for reference. The book was one of six titles in the Favorite Series, which…

The Noisy Boy

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This very modest printing was marketed at the lowest end of the McLoughlin Brothers’ catalog, retailing at one cent per copy. The books sold to retailers at one dollar for a gross (144 copies), so the profit on their sale was attractive to…

Cock Robin

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One reason for the success of McLoughlin Brothers was its early adaptation and commitment to issuing books in series, such as the Aunt Oddamadodd, Fairy Moonbeam, and Big Picture Books series. Retelling stories, reusing illustrations, and repurposing…

The Owl and the Fox

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Shaped books were part of the McLoughlin Brothers line from 1858, but really became a staple starting in the 1890s. Classic titles like Simple Simon, Robinson Crusoe, and The Owl and the Fox were produced in this format, along with new stories about…

“Jack and the Bean Stalk.” In The Jolly Jump-Up’s Favorite Nursery Stories

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The Jolly Jump-Up pop-up books first appeared in 1939 and featured an American family and their adventures (seeing the circus, going on vacation, buying a house). The series also contained titles for younger children, including an ABC book, a…

A.B.C. of Objects for Home and School. Kindergarten First Book

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During the golden era, McLoughlin Brothers continued to produce products that appealed to a broad age range of readers, from pre-readers to advanced students. McLoughlin Brothers also continued to work collaboratively with other publishers when it…

Ten Little Niggers

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McLoughlin Brothers issued its first edition of Ten Little Niggers around 1872. The extremely violent verses where individuals are killed off one by one until only one remains, are based on a blackface minstrel song of the same title which was first…

Santa Claus & His Works

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McLoughlin Brothers was quick to capitalize on the potential of Santa-related books as holiday commodities, contracting in 1869 with Thomas Nast for illustrations to accompany what was essentially a Santa sequel to A Visit from St. Nicholas. Nast…

The Night Before Christmas or A Visit of St. Nicholas

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McLoughlin Brothers is well known for creating picture books associated with Christmas, and its branding of products for the holiday season was ambitious, starting with one of their first holiday books in 1869. The plate house copy of an 1888 edition…