Saturday, 1 December 2012

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

I’m going to be away from my blog for the next few weeks. Family time coming up, but I will miss you all and will be anxious to catch up with your news in January. Thanks for being such lovely friends.

It only remains for me to say….

 have a wonderful Christmas

and a very 
Ring out the old ring in the new,
Ring in a happy year for you!

See you all in January, much love Barbara xx

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

A tiger took me to the circus and other star turns!

A Tiger Took Me to the Circus (out of print) written and illustrated by Marjorie van Heerden. Alexia really wants to visit the circus, but she is not well enough to go. Later that same night her cat turns into a tiger and carries her to the show. Alexia has a wonderful time and is even allowed into the ring to help with the acts. In the morning, Alexia and her cat are curled up asleep in bed. The only sign of their night time adventure is a red balloon floating above the bed.

Tuck's Annual 1950 full of Star Turns! First story "Learning to Ride" by Elizabeth Anderson illustrated by Lionel Edwards, also contains flight to Cairo by Uncle Mac and Fortune's fool by Harold Napier. The Circus Comes to Town by Denis Constanduros with illustrations by John Kenney. A Ladybird book published c1957. Sammy the Shunter No 2 Sammy goes to the circus by Eileen Gibb, undated c1960s.

Rupert and Edward at the Circus undated c1973. Rupert Little Bear Library No. 4. Contains two stories - Rupert and Edward at the circus and Rupert and the birthday cake. Carol with the circus by Berenice E Lea, published in 1969.  Carol and her Dad are travelling with the MacNeill Circus because Carol's Dad looks after the animals. The circus comes to school by Syliva Little with illustrations by GilbertDunlop. The news that Manor School is about to close comes as something of a bomb-shell. It's particularly upsetting for Fran and Judy because they will be sent to new schools and lose touch with Menha, the Indian girl. The arrival of Potter's Magnificent World-Famous Circus and Banda the elephant provides the solution to all their problems. Rupert and Edward at the circus, 

Japhet & Happy Annual 1948. Lots of colourful picture strip stories drawn by James Francis Horrabin. Japhet and Happy started out as a newspaper cartoon originally appearing as the adventures of the Noah family in the Daily News during 1919 and then in the News Chronicle. Ernest and Celestine at the circus by Gabrielle Vincent published 1989. Ernest is a bear and Celestine a baby mouse. Ernest discovered Celestine while clearing rubbish from the streets and has looked after her ever since. In this story, Ernest promises Celestine a visit to the circus. In the attic is a costume that was once the trademark of Ernest the Clown. Ernest dons this attire and spruces up Celestine, and the two not only enjoy the scheduled circus acts, but they also entertain the audience with an impromptu act of their own.

The adventures of Goopy the personality pup by James Gilroy published in 1948. Illustrations are by Nigel Mould.  Goopy is a very intelligent but rather odd looking puppy! In this story, he performs in a circus, travels all over the world, flies in a balloon and meets the man in the moon and Father Christmas!

I’m not a big fan of the circus, but I do love the artwork on these colourful circus books. Do you enjoy going to the circus?

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Botany Bay comes to Somerset!

Added value; found in books -

Two Salvation Army certificates of merit awarded to Pamela Howard of the Rockdale Corps 

together with this pretty presentation bookplate. 

Found in Dancer in Danger by Lorna Hill 1st edition 1960 signed by the author.

I assumed Rockdale was a small village in the UK, so imagine my surprise on finding it’s in a place called Brighton-le-Sands on the shores of Botany Bay, Australia.

Brighton Le-Sands - Botany Bay a few kilometres south of the Sydney central business district.

This was a real "Beam me up, Scotty" moment!  From a grey November day in the UK to the shores of Botany Bay – I love my job!

Dancer in danger is now sold, thank you for looking.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Dear Maudie, Are you deceased or diseased?

Postcards from my collection;

Set of six "Oilette" postcards Sent to Miss Maudie Anscombe, Lynton Lodge, Hove, Sussex, UK. The cards were all posted during December 1904 and January 1905.  Oilette is a trade name used by Raphael Tuck to describe cards reproduced from original paintings.
Once on board the lugger, and the girl is mine. Illustration by G. E. Shepheard
Posted December 1st, 1904.

Message reads; Dear Maudie, I know this set will suit you. Went to see your Darling Lewis Waller in His Majesty's servant yesterday. Love Charlie

*** Lewis Waller played the part of Geoffrey Mohun in His Majesty's servant written By Sarah Barnwell Elliott and performed at the Aquarium Theatre (later the Imperial Theatre) Westminster, London. There is a photograph of Lewis Waller playing the part of Geoffrey Mohun here

Sarah Barnwell Elliott, novelist, short-story writer, and advocate of women's rights, born in Savannah Georgia, the daughter of Stephen Elliott, a bishop of the Episcopal Church, who was a leader in the founding of the University of the South at Sewanee. More here 

The Lass that loves a sailor.
Posted December 8th, 1904.

Dear Maudie, Did it feel grand, then at being able to crow over ones learned relation? Don't say you did not! I hope your pink dress is finished and that your green dress suits you and that your friends like your blue dress and that your yellow dress is not too thin for the cold weather and that your purple dress will be ready in time for the ball. I hope you appreciate my delicate cynicism! Much love, Charlie

The course of true love never did run smooth.
Posted December 14th, 1904

Dear Maudie, Your irregularity is simply disgraceful!!! I'm in the eighth heaven of delight. Bert has a cold; Aunt May has a cold; Vera has a cold; Metcalf has a cold; the driver of the G.M.C has a cold, and I have not! Metcalf and I are busy thinking out grand Xmas decorations so you'd better dodge along soon and help us. Much love, Charlie.

Two is Company.
Posted January 1st, 1905.

Dear Maudie, Below is own interesting programme on Wednesday last - 2.15pm arrived Waterloo. 2.25 Coliseum - House full. 2.30 Prince of Wales House Full (this continues with a list of other theatres also displaying house full signs). 3.00 stop for refreshments. 4.00 attended evensong at St. Paul's. 4.35 left St. Paul's at beginning of sermon. 4.40 tea at A.B.C shop 5.30 arrived at Drury Lane theatre, outside. 7.00 Drury Lane, inside. Remainder of day is oblivion owing to exhaustion. Only just recovered. Much love, Charlie.

The old, old story.
Posted January 11th, 1905.

Dear Maudie, Are you deceased or diseased? Please relive my anxiety at once, as it is preying on my mind. Shan't tell you any news, as I don't wish to waste my time on a corpse. Much love, Charlie.

The harvest moon.
Posted on January 21st, 1905.

Dear Maudie, Thanks for relieving my anxiety. I have had a ferocious cold this week - hence the lateness. You had better come and say farewell to the Clarke's as they are departing Tues or Wed. Lamentations going on all around. Much love, Charlie.

I love this set of cards, not just for the illustrations but for the wonderful messages.  If you missed the previous set of cards sent to Maudie you can see them here.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

The three bears and the story of Cinderella told in rhyme

Perplexed? That's exactly how I feel about this book. Who wrote it? Who illustrated it? Who Published it - and when? I have no idea! The name M. Jones is printed on the front cover - so I assume M. Jones wrote the poems but then again, maybe he/she provided the illustrations? There is just nothing to go on, I've scoured each of the illustrations with a magnifying glass in the hope of finding a hidden signature - no luck. I've searched online and through all my reference books for a mention of this publication - nothing.

I've been through the British Library and Copac catalogues - again nothing. HELP! Does anyone recognise anything about this book? I have a 'feeling' that the illustrations might be by Agnes Richardson or H.G.C. Marsh Lambert - but that's about it. It may have been published by Raphael Tuck as they did a series in the same format, but again, I've had no luck with finding anything.  

The Three Bears - told in rhyme.

There stood a house upon a hill where three bears lived - perhaps do still, all round the house was grass so green the prettiest I have ever seen. Inside this house, so I am told - lived three brown bears as bold as bold, they went in sizes one, two, three, the smallest one was tiny wee. Now Mother bear the porridge made and every day the table laid, each had his special bowl and chair even the tenny weeny bear.

And Goldilocks was warned, they say, that through the woods she must not stray, but oh! She did, need I say more? And came upon the three bears' door. "How sweet!" she cried and up did creep and through the window took a peep, the latch upon the door she tried and very boldly walked inside. The porridge she at once did spy and ate the smallest up - oh my, then to the chairs she quickly flew and sat on each in turn it's true. The smallest she liked best of all but through the bottom she did fall which gave her quite a nasty scare to find she'd broken the wee bear's chair.

"Then up the stairs" she said "I'll go" where three beds stood all in a row, "I wonder who sleeps here" she said and climbed upon the biggest bed.  And then she tried the middle size but soon the small one caught her eyes, so on to this one she did creep and very soon was fast asleep. Now in the bears came one, two, three - just all as hungry as could be, "OH! who's been sitting on my chair?" cried our poor little weeny bear...

I'm pretty sure you all know how the story ends so I will leave it there.

Cinderella is also told in rhyme;

Now Cinderella lived, you know, in fairy tales long, long ago. She had the hardest work to do and all her clothes were rags; it's true.

I'm not even sure if this is the same illustrator or if two or more people supplied the artwork.
What do you think? 

The three bears and the story of Cinderella told in rhyme is now sold, thank you for your interest.

Update 12th November.
Earlier today I received an email from ‘Terence’ asking... is it possible to get a copy of the full rhyme please. So for Terence and anyone else who is interested this is the rest of the three bears rhyme.

“Someone’s been here I wonder who? And tasted all our porridge too, someone has eaten all of mine” cried baby bear with such a whine. Then up the stairs they all did creep and found Miss Goldilocks asleep, the little bear saw her and said, “Just look she’s curled up on my bed!” But Goldilocks was soon awake, and I am sure began to quake, right through the window she did jump and landed down with such a bump! She ran so quickly down the path that all the bears I’m sure did laugh, she ran, and ran with all her might until that house was lots to sight.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Guest post: Memories of Dudley D Watkins by Angela Keyworth

I'm delighted to share this wonderful guest post by Angela Keyworth (nee Watkins). Thank you so much Angela I'm sure readers of this blog will enjoy it every bit as much as I did.

Memories of my Uncle Dudley D Watkins

Will Watkins was a lithographic print artist.  He came from London to Nottingham in search of work, where he met and married my Grandmother, Eva Charlotte Dexter.  Work must have been in short supply, so my Grandparents moved to Manchester seeking employment.  Dudley was born there in 1907 and my Grandparents moved back to Nottingham three months later.  They obviously hadn't made their fortune!
Dudley was a gifted artist from an early age.  After leaving school he worked for Boots the Chemist in the arts department and attended Nottingham School of Art.  He later moved to Glasgow School of Art and spent the rest of his life working for D C Thomson in Dundee.  In many articles about Dudley it states that his family moved to Scotland but this was not so.  My Grandparents, my father Alec and his sister my Aunt Dorothy stayed in Nottingham.  My father was born in 1916 so was only a school boy when Dudley left home.

Dudley was the creator and first artist to draw Desperate Dan in the Dandy comic, Lord Snooty in the Beano comic and several other comic characters. He also drew The Broons, a Scottish family story and Oor Wullie, a wee boy in dungarees who started and ended his days sitting on a bucket!  The Broons and Oor Wullie can still be found in the centrefold pages of the Scottish Sunday Post today.  Dudley was also a very fine landscape artist.  He illustrated four books.  Kidnapped, Oliver Twist, Robinson Crusoe and Treasure Island.  I have these books, three of which are inscribed to my parents.  I shall keep them for a rainy day!  Dudley's work is very much sort after, but very rarely comes on the market.

When I was a young girl, Dudley and his family would come to Nottingham on holiday once or at the most twice a year to stay with my Grandmother.  I can vividly remember sitting on Dudley's knee in my Grandmother's front room watching him ink in the cartoon characters and write the speech bubbles.  Such was his work load that he always brought work with him on holiday.  In the afternoons we would go out into the countryside and Dudley and my Aunt who was also an artist would set up their easels and sketch.  I would run between the two of them to see which drawing I preferred.  I always liked Dudley's the best and I would whisper in his ear and tell him so!  Dorothy was a fine artist too and I have some of her work, although she emigrated to Salt Lake City to be with her American relatives, the Dexter family who also had artists in the family.  Some of my Aunt's paintings are still over the water!

In my Grandmother's front room was a lovely little bureau.  I am sitting at it now working at my laptop.  I wonder what my Grandparents would make of a laptop?!  At least the bureau is still being used for the purpose it was built.

My Uncle didn't have a daughter and so made a great fuss of me which I lapped up!  He was a lovely, lovely man.

Source: Nottingham post
Angela Keyworth, Nottingham

NB. If you are interested in Dudley D Watkins be sure to read the comments section. Angela has added a lot more information in her replies.

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Downton but not as we know it!

A while ago, Sharon over at Sharon’sunlit memories mentioned she was enjoying Downton Abbey.

For those of you who don’t know, Downton Abbey is a costume drama starring Maggie Smith and Hugh Bonneville. It first aired in the UK in September 2010 and in the United States in January 2011 and has gone on to be a huge success loved by millions, including Sharon and me! The series is set on the fictional estate of Downton Abbey and depicts the lives of the Crawley family and their servants.

Sharon’s comment reminded me of a visit to Downton Abbey aka Highclere Castle in 1999. It also prompted me to look out some of the photographs. We were there for the wedding of Nicola and Jay. Nicola is the daughter of two of our oldest and dearest friends. 

I'm sorry about the quality of some of the pictures my camera was struggling with the lack of light.

Nicola was the perfect fairy tale princess, and the castle was beautifully bedecked for Christmas. 

The wedding took place in the Saloon, seen here from the staircase.

I thought my outfit was perfect but looking at it now I'm not so sure! I wish I could go back and chose something more suitable for the occasion and surroundings. I don’t have the suit any more, but the 'fascinator' is carefully preserved in tissue paper. You never know it might turn out to be a collector’s item one day!

It was nice to be part of the upstairs family for a day, but if we were to travel back in time I'm sure our place would be firmly downstairs!

My mum often talked about her days as a scullery maid (the lowest grade of ‘below stairs’ maid). Her duties included many of the most menial tasks, cleaning and scouring the scullery floor, washing all the pots and pans and lighting the fires on the kitchen stove. One of her most vivid memories was of making beeswax polish. This involved melting beeswax in a pan of turpentine; all was going well until she decided to leave it ‘simmering’ and get on with some of her other tasks. The result was a fire, followed by a very serious telling off and a docking of two week's wages.  Mum was born in 1917, so I would guess this must have been around 1931. I can’t watch Downton without thinking about her and wishing I could ask her more about her time below stairs.

Friday, 26 October 2012

Things that go bump in the night!

From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!

Dracula's Bedtime Story Book - tales to keep you awake at night
Count Dracula introduces chilling and hilarious tales about Jekyll and Hyde, the secret of Treasure Island, the truth concerning Noah's Ark, the mystery of Humpty Dumpty, British Scareways, Xmas at castle Drac and other scary but delightful tales. 

Jan Pienkowski's Haunted House
This wonderful pop-up book dares you to journey through a haunted mansion. Jan Pienkowski has created a scary world in which the eyes in the portraits follow you through the rooms. A spaghetti monster leaps from the refrigerator, and you come face to face with a hilarious blue alien. There are more than skeletons in this closet!

Nesta the little witch
Garbled spells yield ridiculous results at the School for Spells.The only student with any promise is little Nesta. Her cleverness earns the jealousy of her teachers, Windbag Wartnose and Morag the Hag, and they sabotage her. As the two cackle in the shadows of the witch lab, both are gobbled up by a monster (another student's project gone awry). Nesta releases the teachers to help clean up, but not without a warning--next time she might make a mistake "too big for a little witch to fix."

Now for a very different kind of ghost story!
The Lone Ranger and the Ghost Horse
Lots of wonderful memories here! A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty "Hi Ho Silver!"  With his faithful Indian companion Tonto, the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains, goes in search of a ghost horse!

 Vintage Christmas card - with added pumpkin! The witch is actually carrying a Christmas pudding - you can still see the steam if you look closely! But why would you want a witch at Christmas? Hey presto, with a little computer wizardry we have the perfect Halloween card! 

Happy Halloween - thanks for calling in.

Update July 2016: All the books featured are now sold. March House books closed on my retirement in 2015, but I am still happily blogging here at March of Time Books. Your visits are always appreciated.

Monday, 22 October 2012

A dream of Sadler's Wells; Lorna Hill

I recently bought a lovely collection of books by Lorna Hill (thank you Ruth) and thought it would be nice to share some of the cover art with you.

Lorna Hill was born in Durham, England in 1902. A dream of Sadler's Wells (1950) was the first of a long series of novels based on her daughter's training at the Sadler's Wells Ballet School (now The Royal Ballet School).  Lorna Hill wrote numerous books during her lifetime, including the Dancing Peel series (ballet), the Marjorie series and the Patience series (pony books) and a series about Vicarage children. If you are interested in finding out more about Lorna Hill and her books, Collecting Books and Magazines is a good place to start.

All the above books are now sold, thank you for your interest.

Have you read anything by Lorna Hill or any other books about the ballet?

Update July 2016: March House books closed on my retirement in 2015, but I do still blog here at March of Time Books and always appreciate your visit. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...