The height of the season

Its August...and junking season is in full swing...
Over the weekend, there were sales everywhere - garage/estate/yard/ - whatever you call it, its happening now.  In our community, it was the weekend for the Mother of All Garages Sales (that's the name of their event - with sponsors and a printed map...it was organized!)...100 homes participating in North Everett...and though we didn't hit all 100 by any means, we spent three glorious hours on Saturday morning, perusing the goods, chatting with neighbors, patronizing several lemonade stands, strolling the streets and uncovering a few fabulous finds...

I picked up an English ironstone plate for free...love the old grazing on it.
The mustard jar was a quarter...my mom had one just like it.
And a stellar collection of these vintage texts...Little Blue Books...

It was at the Historic Everett's sale that I found these vintage books...it was at the start of our day so I just didn't know if I wanted to commit to them yet...I only brought $15 with me (my attempt to control my junking urges!)  Three hours later when we were walking back to the car, I stopped in once again...they were still there...and I knew they had to come home with me...all 45 of them...for a total of $10.

I've been junking for quite a while...but have never seen these slender volumes before...and don't know why they are called Little Blue Books...since you can see, there are other colors besides blue...but with a little research, I did find out this...

from Wikipedia
"Little Blue Books are a series of small staple-bound books published by the Haldeman-Julius Publishing Company of Girard, Kansas (1919–1978).
Emanuel Haldeman-Julius, an atheist-Jew, socialist, and newspaper publisher, and his wife, Marcet, set out to publish small low price paperback pocketbooks that were intended to sweep the ranks of the working class as well as the "educated" class. Their goal was to get works of literature, a wide range of ideas, common sense knowledge and various points of view out to as large an audience as possible. These books, at approximately 3½ by 5 inches easily fit into a working man's back pocket or shirt pocket.

The works covered were frequently classics of Western literature: Goethe and Shakespeare were well represented, as were the works of the Ancient Greeks, and more modern writers like Voltaire, Emile Zola, H. G. Wells. Some of the topics the Little Blue Books covered were on the cutting edge of societal norms. Alongside books on making candy (#518 - "How to Make All Kinds of Candy" by Helene Paquin) and classic literature (#246 - Hamlet by William Shakespeare) were ones exploring homosexuality (#692 - "Homo-Sexual Life" by William J Fielding) and agnostic viewpoints (#1500 - "Why I Am an Agnostic: Including Expressions of Faith from a Protestant a Catholic and a Jew" by Clarence Darrow). Shorter works from many popular authors such as Jack London and Henry David Thoreau were published, as were a number of political tracts written by Robert Ingersoll or Haldeman-Julius himself.

Following World War II, the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover viewed the Little Blue Books' inclusion of such subjects as socialism, atheism, and frank treatment of sexuality as a threat and put Haldeman-Julius on their enemies list. This caused a rapid decline in the number of bookstores carrying the Little Blue Books, and they slowly sank into obscurity by the 1950s, although still well remembered by older people who had read them in the 1920s and 1930s.  The works continued to be reprinted after Haldeman-Julius' drowning in 1951 and were sold by mail order by his son until the Girard printing plant and warehouse was destroyed by fire in 1978."

Looking through my stack, I have Macbeth and King Lear, Chemistry for Beginners and Latin Self Taught...
but these were the best of the bunch...

and my favorites...

I'm already thinking of how I can incorporate them into a collage but still have the capability to read the pages...
the information is priceless!

I'm adding the stack of 45 volumes to the pile of books on my nightstand...this should keep me occupied (and informed!) for quite a while...

Linking up to Texture Tuesdays at Kim Klassen's Cafe...the images are all so beautiful...


  1. What a great find...love the "How To Be a Gatecrasher" volume! The little mustard jar is lovely and the vignette is charming! Sounds like you are having fun!

  2. Thanks for the history lesson! These look familiar and I wonder if I might not have a few stuck in a box somewhere. Love the photo of the stack!

  3. "How To Save Money" ....that's easy! Don' go junking! Just teasing!!! I am so envious of your finds...particularly the Little Blue Books! I think you need to do a post with pointers from the "How to Be a Gatecrasher" book!

  4. WOW I am so jealous!!! It was so good to see you Saturday! Thanks for supporting Audrey's lemonade stand!! Let's keep in touch! Your blog is FABULOUS!!!!! :)

  5. You hit the jackpot! I can't wait to see what you do with them!

  6. This is one great pile of books. You'll be reading for a long time. I would start with the one on how to win prize contests!

  7. I love the mustard jar!

  8. You did alright. I love the mustard jar. What a steal!

  9. P.S. Forgot to tell you I like your blog banner. Very nice

  10. I love books and those Little Blue Books look very interesting,
    what a great find !
    Thanks for your nice comment,

  11. Oh wow...how I would love that delicious pile of little blue books here in my own home. There is just something about paper products that get me every time. Great find!

    thanks for sharing.

    ciao bella
    Creative Carmelina

  12. Terrific finds, Amy! You'll be a know it all by the time you finish reading all the little blue books. :)


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