Friday, August 31, 2012

Wonderful illustrations from two old school textbooks

If this morning's word problems were a bit too taxing for you, I'll wrap up back-to-school week with something nice and easy.

Check out these wonderful illustrations from two old textbooks — 1872's "Osgood's American Fifth Reader for Schools and Families" by Lucius Osgood and 1942's "Language Readiness for Grade Two" by Florence K. Ferris and Edward E. Keener.

First up is the Ferris/Keener workbook...

  • It doesn't look like Betty is thrilled about her visit to see Ruth and Bob.
  • It doesn't appear that Betty was wearing any kind of seat belt.
  • What kind of person do you think Betty's mother is? Discuss.

  • There I go with illustrations of young women on the telephone again.
  • What's up with that? Discuss.

  • His outfit.1
  • Discuss.

And now the Osgood reader...

Note: Can you find all seven children in the above illustration?

Note: The alternate title for "The Barefoot Boy" was "The Barefoot Boy with the Alarmingly Disproportionate Head."

Note: And, finally, we conclude back-to-school week with this illustration of a schoolhouse from the 1872 textbook. Are your old schools still around? Share your memories of them in the comments section below.

1. Is his outfit better or worse than this outfit. Discuss.


  1. This post cracked me up. How about "The Barefoot Boy" who looks more like a man.

  2. I find this really interesting because these are the illustrations most textbooks have during the 1980s. It's fun to see them again now. Jules M. of