Juvenile Pastimes, in Verse.
Juvenile Pastimes, in Verse.
Juvenile Pastimes, in Verse.

Juvenile Pastimes, in Verse.

Chapbook, likely reprinted from a circa 1830 Mahlon Day New York imprint, documenting 15 antebellum children’s games, sports, and pastimes. The text comprises a poetical quatrain for each activity plus commentary on playing safely and on the health benefits of these outdoor games.

Games or sports seen here—sometimes showing boys and girls playing together—include “Foot Ball,” “Blindman’s Buff” [sic], “Hop-Scotch,” “Trundling the Hoop,” “Marbles,” and “Skipping the Rope,” etc.  For example, “Flying the Kite”—“What can to youth give more delight / Than flying of the paper Kite..”.—notes that “[i]n the spring, the boys of New-York fly their kites…But still it is against the law, for horses are often frightened by them.”

The chapbook also includes a baseball-like game, played with bat and ball and outfielders, called “Trap and Ball”: “How delightful it is, on a fine spring day, to see boys actively engaged at this play! It strengthens their arms, exercises their legs, and adds pleasure to the mind.”

The chapbook is undated, however, an ad on the back cover for for publisher Degen & Estes, Boston stationers and booksellers, gives their address as “23 Cornhill,” thus dating this chapbook to before 1866, when they appear to have moved to “22 Cornhill.”

Description: Juvenile Pastimes, in Verse.

Boston: Degen & Estes, n.d., c.1840s–1865. [15], [1(blank)]pp. Chapbook. Approx. 4 x 2½ inches. Illustrated wrappers. Illustration cut on each page. Publisher’s full-page ad on rear cover. Ownership inscription on front cover and on rear endpaper of “Miss Idella Tracey.” Brief rubbing along spine; small stain to upper cover; very good.


Unlisted in OCLC under this imprint.


See all items by