Sunday, May 03, 2009

Back from Boston

I spent two hours rummaging through the carts in the vacant lot next to The Brattle Bookshop. The most interesting bookplate I found was for Miss Farmer's School of Cookery. In the past I always did this hurriedly because I was on the company's dime and I had a tight appointment schedule. It was much more enjoyable this time around without the pressure.

"Fannie Farmer was born in Boston in 1857. Although destined for medical school, a serious illness forced her to change her plans and she, instead, attended the Boston Cooking School studying under Mary Lincoln. She graduated in 1889.
Within a short time she was appointed Director, a position she held until 1902. While in that position she complied and edited the now famous Boston Cooking-School Cook Book and justifiably less well known Chafing Dish Possibilities.
On leaving the Boston Cooking School she established her own venture which she called Miss Farmer's School of Cookery.
She went on to write such books as Food and Cookery for the Sick and Convalescent (1904) and Catering for Special Occasions with Menus & Recipes (1911).
She became an expert in the preparation of food for the ill and infirm even being invited to lecture at the Harvard Medical School on the topic.
She was also one of the pioneers of writing recipes in terms of standard measurements - a practice not well known at the time.
She also promoted her recipes via her long-running column in the national magazine Woman's Home Companion.
Before her death in 1915 she had overseen 21 editions of the Boston Cooking-School Cookbook"


This small gem (2 inches square) was used around 1840. The image could be Masonic or Mr. Hudson might have been a builder or carpenter. There was an L.U. Lawrence in Hudson New York who around 1850 grew award winning plums . That is the Google reference most often cited.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I purchased the Hartman bookplate from Tom Boss at the Braintree Book Show. It was designed by David McNeely Stauffer and it is mentioned in passing on p.368 in American Bookplates by Charles Dexter Allen. Tom seemed to be selling a good number of items but the traffic at the show appeared to be thin. I am not sure why the turnout was so light.The show manager advertised extensively and the dealers brought some very desirable items.

Maybe it was a combination of the general economic malaise and a fear of being in crowds because of the flu scare. Mary insisted that I buy an alcohol hand spray to bring with me.

I saw no harm in being cautious so I used it throughout the day. It seems to have worked.

I also purchased the mathematical instrument maker's label shown at the top of the posting. It is probably from the 1850's
Frederick Walker Lincoln, Jr. (1817 - 1898)
"Frederick Walker Lincoln, Jr. was born at Boston on February 27, 1817 according top his monument in Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His grandmother was Deborah Revere, daughter of Paul Revere. When he was thirteen years old, he was apprenticed to Gedney King and his son and successor, Charles Gedney King. In 1839 Mr. Lincoln went in business for himself. He continued for forty-three years as a maker of nautical and surveying instruments. In 1883 he sold the business, F. W. Lincoln Jr. & Co., to Charles C. Hutchinson who had been a partner since 1858. He continued the business under the firm name of C. C. Hutchinson until his death in 1913. The firm was then taken over by his successors until 1940 under the same name.
In December 1857, Mr. Lincoln became Mayor of Boston. He was elected Mayor each year serving until December 1864.
In 1882 he accepted the position of Manager of the Boston Storage Company, the position he held at the time of his death on 13 September 1898."
Reference: Smart, Charles E. The Makers Of Surveying Instruments In America Since 1700 Troy, New York: Regal Art Press. 1962

One final note, the Antique Week newspaper ( May 4th edition) had an article about bookplates in which I was featured. It can be seen at

1 comment:

Marianne Dow said...

Lewis --

Congrats on the AW article. I really enjoy your blog. The variety of images on your bookplates is incredible.

I wrote a post about your site on my blog, Ms Dow Antiques.

Thanks for sharing your collection, and all your research.

--Marianne Dow