Arthur S. Maxwell, aka Uncle Arthur, began writing these 'bedtime stories' in 1923. He was a Seventh Day Adventist and prolific author of over 1000 highly moralistic tales.
Here he is with his grandchildren.
Annabel and I found these yesterday in an op-shop. Ninety-nine cents each and in perfect condition. They were either treasured, or never read - I'd put my money on the second option.
If you were trying to encourage your child to read (even a 70's child, which is when these volumes were published) you would not give her/him one of Uncle Arthur's books. Sleep inducing? No question. A page turner? No Way!
Fast forward forty years though, and these little books are giving us (well Annabel and I at least) so much more bang for the buck we paid. They are hilarious. A retro lover's dream come true - fashion, furniture, interiors, gardens, etc. These books have got it all! Yes, they're preachy (Uncle Arthur very nearly refers to himself as J.C. in at least one story!), politically incorrect and old-fashioned, but they're also a charming and lovely reminder of "the olden days" (that's how my girls refer to my childhood. Ha! I'm not that old!)
Anyway, as per usual I've written more than I intended (I hope I haven't lost you...) Here are some of my favourite pics from the books. No more words from me, Uncle Arthur's captions are sheer perfection (you'll see...)
from Robber in the House
(we love Bobby)
from Vic and the Vandals
from Lena and the Lizard
(this one cracks me up. every time.)
from Showing Off
from Dawn and the Desks
from Tell Tale Tiny
from When Victor Vanished
(including this one mostly because I like those chairs)
from How Amy Got Anointed
(we feel your pain Michael, bad hair days suck!)
I could've included heaps more - I might just have to do another tribute to Uncle Arthur down the track...
and God bless x