Friday, September 22, 2017

Cool illustrations: The New Human Interest Library (Part 22)

Ugh. So apparently the world is ending tomorrow, maybe, sort of, and — in a serious End Times Heartbreaker — I haven't completed this series on the great photos and illustrations within the 1929's The New Human Interest Library, a book published by The Midland Press.

We are now moving into a section titled The Comradeship Book, which includes information on Boy Rangers, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Camp Fire Girls and 4-H Clubs. This section is mostly photographs, as opposed to illustrations, so that's mostly what I'm presenting here today. They offer a nice glimpse into these youth scouting organizations as they existed 80+ years ago. These smart youngsters would be handy to have around in the event of an apocalypse, should the doomsayers ever be correct.

(Note: Yes, I'm painfully aware of the sexism inherent in the specific tasks that are shown for boys and girls in these photos. Please don't snap at the historian.)


Chicago Boy Scouts building a hospital
at the Owasippe Camp, Whitehall, Michigan

Wearing the official uniform made of
gray-green cotton material


Girls Scouts reviving the ancient English custom of carol singing. These girls have spent hours rehearsing their program of carols. They have studied books in the library to collect information about the costumes to be worn and each girl has made her own costume.

These Camp Fire Girls know how to take care of the baby.

This final item, a full-page illustration, is something that I wish more youth organizations and schools of today would focus on: Personal finance and fiscal discipline. Those are skills that are not emphasized nearly enough. This chart is labeled "Monthly Thrift Chart of the Camp Fire Girls," and it includes columns for receipts and expenditures on items such as allowances, gifts, earnings, candy, movies, travel and setting money aside for future expenses.

Here's an excerpt from the small type at the bottom: "The Camp Fire Girls' Thrift Chart is planned to establish the habit of thrift and of investing small sums. A National Thrift Honor will be awarded by National Headquarters to the girls whose Thrift Charts for ten successive months show an investment of ten per cent of their monthly incomes."

You could probably make copies of this chart and print them on sheets of 8.5x11 paper for daily use. Or maybe there's an app for this!


  1. Wouldn't you just love to see those carolers costumes IRL
    I may just have to download the Camp Fire Girls chart so that I don't spend all of my riches in one place :) I kid, but as we talked about before, it probably would be more practical for kids to learn this in school than some other things.

    1. Those caroling costumes are terrific. It's not my place to say if they're historically accurate, but they do look a bit more like forest pixies than carolers. Also, it's hard to say how ideal those outfits would be a chilly and perhaps snowy night of December caroling. ... I'm with you 100% on the financial chart, and if you need any copies, let me know. Maybe I should start a Papergreat Historical Documents Download Database. Think I could get a sponsor for that?

  2. That reminded me of this oldie but goodie: