Henry Altemus Company

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The following are questions submitted via email by our visitors.

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Questions & Answers
Date Series Num Information
18 Jul 2016 185

Wee Books for Wee Folks

Q:  We have a copy of Peter Rabbit in the beige cover color, with end page illustrations. Your site explains that it would be a Second Edition, Second Format, and date from 1908-1912, but that it should not have the end page illustrations. Can you please help us further identify it?

We know to ignore the 1904 date on the title page.

The title page reads:
Copyright, 1904, by Henry Altemus

The book is 123 pages long, and has the blank pages, so the only odd thing about it, as far as we can tell, is that it has end page illustrations.

Is this still a 1908-1912, Second Edition, Second Format, or is it a Second Edition, First Format?

Our concern is that we correctly identify it before we try to sell it.

A:  Altemus published the first American edition of The Tale of Peter Rabbit. It is part of the Wee Books for Wee Folks Series. Some of the very early beige Peter Rabbits did have the end paper illustrations. For more information, see: http://www.henryaltemus.com/peter_rabbit/peterrabbit.htm.

16 Jul 2016 202

Young People's Library

Q:  Hey there. I recently purchased this at an antique store and am inquiring of its value. Any help is appreciated. Thank you!! Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There

A:  This book is part of the Young People's Library, Format 1. This format was published between 1895 and 1898.

When this book sells, usually it is in the $25-50 range. Recently a copy sold for $115.

14 Jul 2016 48

Beauxarts Series

Q:  Hello, I would like some information on my book please. Attaching a picture of the front cover and the 1st few pages. Idylls of the King

A:  Your book is part of the publisher's series- Beauxarts Series.

This cover format was published 1902. This cover came in several colors.

All of the titles in this series are reprints and were sold within labeled boxes. See here.

Only collectible titles have any real value. Unfortunately your book's title is not very desirable.

12 Jul 2016 130

Marqueterie Series

Q:  Found this pretty little book at an estate sale. I believe it is from the Marqueterie Series. I was wondering if it has any value. There is a double of the last page as seen in the photos. The House of the Seven Gables

A:  Your book is part of the Marqueterie Series. This series was published only in 1899 with stereotyped covers. All of the titles are reprints.

Some of the more collectible titles have some value, i.e. Alices's Adventure in Wonderland.

Your book is not a very desired title.

10 Jul 2016 202

Young People's Library, Format 1

Q:  GOOD EVENING-I think I have a rare & scarce & valuable book? I was going to put it on Ebay but decided to do more research and then found your info. I hope you can help me.
I have a ALICE’S ADVENTURES IN WONDERLAND by Lewis Carroll beige/silver-tone hardback. I think dating from 1895. Could be one of a combination of two. Says on top of title page: ALTEMUS YOUNG PEOPLE'S LIBRARY. With 42 black & white ink illustrations. PHILADELPHIA HENRY ALTEMUS (has NO dust jacket)
I have found out tonight that the fact it says: HENRY ALTEMUS dates it to the correct date-1895 It is a smaller book 4 7/8" x 6 3/4" Has the Silver lettering on front with colored INK figures going diagonal from top left corner to lower right corner starting with Cheshire Cat-mouse-cards-and then Rabbit & Turtle on bottom. Haven’t found one online? In good shape for it’s age. Scuffing of corners-inside front cover is a pen scripted personal signature. Spine pulling away some. Some warping of some pages.

A:  Your book is from the first format of the Young People's Library. Since there is no date on the title page, it was published between 1896-1898. Looking at the ads and using the chart on the website- http://www.henryaltemus.com/series/series202F1.htm- it should be easy to date the book exactly. It is not the earliest edition of this format that was published in 1895.

This book is not uncommon and usually sells on Ebay for between $25-75. The last two sold for $21 and $35.

08 Jul 2016 180

Vademecum Series/Leinbach and Bro.

Q:  I acquired an Altemus book that appears to have been made for a local business in Reading Pa to give to customers. Mosses from an Old Manse

Its ad says they were in business since 1865 and reference 35 yrs which would put publication at around 1900.

Can you provide any info?

A:  Altemus had a long relationship with Leinbach and Bro., a Reading, Pa. department store. As early as 1892 and as late as 1915 Leinbach gave away Altemus books as some type of promotion. The books had an advertisement for Leinbach in the front and the back. Usually on the back cover there was a stamped "Compliments of Leinbach & Bro.".

For more information see: Leinbach and Bro.

The book above is a 1903 book from the Vademecum Series.

06 Jul 2016 179

Vademecum Series

Q:  What can you tell me about this book? Weird Tales

A:  This book was published as part of the Vademecum Series in 1895. It is a reprint as are all of the books in this series.

In 1895 this basic cover design was seen in a number of different colors. Some examples are shown here.

04 Jul 2016 185

Wee Books for Wee Folks

Q:  I found this website by Googling the name of this book I found in my family’s heirlooms. Looks like it was given to a relative in 1908 for Christmas (Inscription on one of the first pages). The Foolish Fox
I would love to know any information you have on this book and what it is worth. I'm putting together a list of things, with estimated values, for an estate.

A:  Your book is part of the Wee Books for Wee Folks Series, Format 1 and was published in 1904. This format was only published for a short time and by the end of 1904 was replaced with Format 2 books.

Originally the six books of the series were sold in three boxed sets. The Foolish Fox was boxed with The Tale of Peter Rabbit.

Fair value would be $10-20.

02 Jul 2016 137

One Syllable Series

Q:  Hello, I have a copy of Gulliver's Travels. 1899 format 2 in good/fair condition. What might it's value be?

A:  This book is from the One Syllable Series. It is part of the later Format 2 (of 4) books and printed between 1905-6 and 1909.

It is a reprint and originally came with a dust jacket.

In this poor shape it has nominal value only.

The formats of this titles are shown here.

30 Jun 2016 180

Vademecum Series

Q:  I found your website and wondered if you could help determine the market price of The Cricket on the Hearth published by Henry Altemus.
Thanks much.

A:  This book is part of the Vademecum Series and was published in 1905-1906.

During this year four different flower patterns were placed as paste-ons (appliqués) on the covers. See here.

The covers were published in a number of different colors and the books came in a labeled box. See here.

All of the titles in this series are reprints so only the most collectible ones have any significant value.

This title is not among the valuable ones (in my opinion).

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Last Revision: January 3, 2018