Early Leather Books

My most recent passion is early leather books. I can’t seem to get enough of them. My most recent purchase was this early 18th century leather book of common prayers.

It’s not that big, health measuring 6 inches high and 3 inches wide. It has the best patina. You can almost see how it was held by the wear marks on the cover. The spine is embellished with a lovely design done in gold. Besides it being so beautiful, it has a bonus! Early writings on several pages.

This is what is written on one of the pages, including spellings. Sufanna Crow har Book God give her grace Therin to look not to looks But understand learning is better house and land when house is gone spent then learning is most exlent. Jan 12 1747

In the 18th century and before the letter f was used instead of the letter s.

On the page before this one, is another writing. It says, Laurence Crow Ann Tomini 1722

Stel not this book for fear at him for her douth stel the owners name

This “Book of Common Prayer” is all original, even the inside pages. The colors are so beautiful. It’s done in a flame stitch design. Some of you might have this pattern on a sofa or chair. I wonder if the idea for the flame stitch fabric came from these early books? I have sold many early books on my website, and will continue to look for more for those of you that love them like I do. I’ll be doing some antiquing this weekend. I’ll keep my eye peeled for you.

This is another favorite. Love the inside writings, but can you imagine my delight when I turned the pages and found this wonderful ink and watercolor drawing, signed and dated, Sarah Jane Hughs 1831!

My friend suggested that the 8 on this book marking was a dollar sign, and suggested that it said $15.. It does look that way, but there is a 1 in from of the what looks like a dollar sign. Later that day I gave more thought to what she said. This book was printed 1815. Do you suppose that James McKnight was a wealthy man, and for fun he dated his book 1815 using a dollar sign? That must be it, don’t you think?

Consider the next time you give a book to someone, write something personal and date it too. I am so glad that the former owners of these books thought to do that. One day it will be very special to someone that loves collecting old books.



4 Responses to “Early Leather Books”

  1. tj Says:

    …What a beautiful collection of leather books Carole! :o )

    …I agree, that James McKnight was a wealthy man, with a sense of humor. And that lil’ drawing is the icing on the cake!

    …I love old books. Well, I love books. Period. My dream is to one day have a wall of bookshelves to fill with all kinds of books. And a comfy chair with a quilt and a good light nearby. Next to being in the garden, that would be heaven to me. :o )

    …Peace & Blessings my friend. :o )

  2. Jenny Says:

    Oh what a find!!! I love old books too! It’s a thrill to peek into someone’s life so long ago. I have a few tattered old books from mid-1800′s on the subject of herbs & their various uses/remedies! Too much fun!

    Happy hunting!

  3. carole holt Says:

    Hi tj and Jenny. I don’t think I would ever want to read a book with a Kindle, although I have thought about buying one. I treasure my books, old and new. They are like friend, so nice to be with. Glad you love them too.

  4. Nicole Roberts Says:

    Hi, I thought you and your audience might also enjoy this collection of American Stone Books at http://americanstonebooks.com. The site features multiple large photos and detailed descriptions of each stone book in a searchable catalog.

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