Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Old textbook used in York County: "The Girl Next Door"

About a week ago, I was reading the always-fun Facebook group called "I Grew Up in York, PA in the 50's & 60's," and I came across the photo, shown at right, that had been posted by member Ed Strayer.

Ed wrote: "Who remembers when every classroom had one of these?"

He was referring to the wood-and-wire contraption that holds five pieces of chalk at once. It was used — with much screeching — by teachers who needed to put multiple straight lines on the blackboard in order to teach penmanship or music.

But the chalk holder wasn't what caught my eye.

I immediately thought, "Hey, I have that book!"

Indeed, I am a sucker for old schoolbooks. I cannot pass them up, if they're cheap. They are, of course, great fodder for Papergreat posts. But I also — much to Joan's chagrin — just enjoy collecting them. A moment of truth is surely going to come (probably in the near future) when I have to determine just what to do with all those old books. Our family goals, after all, are to simplify our lives and get rid of stuff, not accumulate it. I'm a bit troublesome in that regard, sometimes. But I'm working on it.

So, among my schoolbooks is "The Girl Next Door," which was published in 1948 by Scott, Foresman and Company. It was written by Dorothy Baruch and Elizabeth Montgomery and illustrated by Ruth Steed.1

It's part of the "Health and Personal Development Series," and so it has chapter titles such as "How Germs Are Spread," "Foods You Need," "Taking Care of Your Teeth," "Strong, Straight Bodies," and "Muscles and Ice Cream."

Also, "Hide the Bean."2

This textbook, which I picked up at last month's always-amazing Book Nook Bonanza3 in York County, has a direct connection to York County history, too. These are the two stamps on the inside front cover:

South Eastern Joint Schools

Property of Boro. School District Stewartstown, Penna.

Finally, this is the only schoolbook I've ever come across that features a chapter about children playing in an abandoned house. It's a step removed from becoming a Stephen King story, really. All it needs is a Hubie Marsten appearance.

1. One of illustrator Ruth Steed's most famous efforts was for Dodie Smith's "I Capture the Castle."
2. Would "Hide the Bean" be a good band name? Discuss.
3. I'm hoping to write about my Bonanza Haul later this week, finally. I've been dawdling on that one.

1 comment:

  1. it also was a school book in new Brunswick Canada I own my mother old school book