Monday, June 15, 2009

The Kanter Girls

Morgan and I bought an old book at a garage sale yesterday called The Kanter Girls by Mary L. B. Branch, published in 1895. The book has smart illustrations and decorative sconces on the chapter pages, done by an artist named Helen Maitland Armstrong. One of my favorite parts is the evidence of this particular books journey, or in archival-speak, it's provenance. First it was a gift to Claire Goodman from her coz' Louise for Christmas in 1895. Later it belonged to Constance L. Holmes of Berkeley, California, who received it on May 7, 1922. Through an unkown exchange of hands, an older jewish woman came to own it in the Haight, who unsuccessfully tried to sell it on E-bay for 30 bucks, until she gave up and had a garage sale and sold it to Morgan and I for $2.50 (which was all we had in our pockets). When Morgan read the chapter titles out loud to me they sounded poetic, so I'll share them with you here:

The invisible rings,
in the woods,
the stream that ran both ways,
go back stream-- go back,
the unexpected happens,
by the air-line,
roses and honeysuckles,
in the garden,
the sound of the drums,
strange countries for to see,
the lunch party,
the little dryad,
the tenant of the pear-tree,
the forest refuge,
something new thursdays only,
calling on the neighbors,
the moonlight picnic,
down a long, long stairway,
little guld,
a royal playmate,
an arctic expedition,
the home of the snow children,
in the snow garden,
the visit repeated,
in the king's hall,
caught in a snow-storm,
going home.

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