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The following are questions submitted via email by our visitors.

If you have a question about Altemus books that you'd like answered please click on the Questions link at the bottom left of this page.

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Questions & Answers
Date Series Num Information
04 Feb 2016

Non Series

Q:  I recently purchased a copy of ‘With Fire and Sword’ that looks like the ‘5th edition’ picture you have at the henryaltemus.com website but does differ.

Here are the differences between my copy and the website copy:
1) Title page: the website version title is in all caps, mine: caps and lower case
2) Title page: website - “HENRY ALTEMUS”, mine: “HENRY ALTEMUS COMPANY”
3) Opposite Title page: mine doesn’t have the pic
4) Spine: my version has the letters ‘Si lwi’ by the sword handle - could this be library markings?

2 questions:
1) Would you know the published year of the version I have?
2) Do you know why both ‘5th edition’ books are different?


A:  Your book is a later version than the one on the website. Altemus incorporated in 1900. Thus any book that has the imprint Henry Altemus Company was published in 1900 or later. The later version may not have originally had the frontispiece picture. I suppose someone could have also removed it.

The lettering on the spine was a later addition. By whom or for what purpose is anyone's guess.

Both books were from the Polish fifth edition. They are essentially the same except that your book was published a couple years later. I suspect your book was published in the 1900 to 1902 era. The exact date is impossible to know.

The earlier book is shown here.


02 Feb 2016 179

Vademecum Series

Q:  Hello, could you please tell me about this book ? I can't seem to find anything about it. Appreciate it!! The House of the Seven Gables

A:  Your book is part of the Vademecum Series. It was published in 1894 and is a reprint. Originally it came in a labeled box. It has only nominal value.


30 Jan 2016

Non Series

Q:  I’ve had this book in my possession for about 20 years now (I liked the tipped-on color cover insert) and didn’t think to look into it’s history until now. Can you give me any information on it? Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Many thanks!


A:  Your book is an Alice that was published in non series form in 1916. It is one of the rarest of the Altemus Alice formats. I have noted it with two different cover colors: green and blue. It originally came within a labeled box which has not been seen.

It appears to have been published in two different formats. One has plain endpapers and a tipped in plate. This is the later book. The other (earlier) format has illustrated endpapers without the tipped in picture.

See: http://www.henryaltemus.com/images/NS_4.htm


24 Jan 2016 185

Wee Books for Wee Folks

Q:  I have a Nursery Tales copyright 1904 by Henry Altemus 45 illustrations by J.R. Neil wondering value.

A:  This book is from the Wee Books for Wee Folks Series and is part of the first format. This style was only published in 1904. Originally it was boxed with another title from this series, Nursery Rhymes. Subsequently this title was published in a number of formats.

Later in 1904 the green cloth book was printed and was followed in about 1908 by the beige cloth book.

In 1916 the title was changed to Mother Goose's Nursery Tales.

In 1918 the format was changed again. This format was unchanged until 1933. (shown here)


22 Jan 2016 69

Classics Series

Q:  Hi! Any info on this title? Macbeth

A:  Hello, This book is either part of the Classics Series or the Slip in the Pocket Series. Without the dust jacket it is impossible to tell. It was published sometime between 1907 and the early teens.

The front cover of the jacket names the series. Examples shown here and here.

All of the books of these series are reprints. Since your title is very common and not in great demand, it has little value.


20 Jan 2016 143

Petit Trianon Series

Q:  I was recently going through some old books I have that either came from my grandmother’s house or from a library book sale. I’m thinking it came from my grandmother’s house, though, as there are no library markings on it. Longfellow's Poems Volume II

Anyway, I was curious as to when it was published; but there is no date listed anywhere in the book. So I did some research on your website and have come to the conclusion that it was either printed in 1903 or 1904. I found a picture of a book with the same cover, but different title on your website. This is based on information I found on your website at the links below:

http://www.henryaltemus.com/series/series143.htm

http://www.henryaltemus.com/series/images/S143_1903_v224.jpg

Attached are a picture of the cover and of the inside title page. Would you say this is a rather accurate assessment of the publishing date?

As you can see, it’s not in the greatest of shape; but I don’t really care about that as I love antiques. And if it did come from my grandmother’s house, it also has sentimental value. I find it interesting that it starts at page 187, though. But I’m assuming that’s because it’s Volume II.

Anyway, I was just curious to know what else you may know about it; and I thought you may find these pictures interesting.


A:  Your research is right on target. This title is part of a publisher's series. These series which were produced by numerous firms generally included a number of books that required no author reimbursement. All the titles here were reprints.

In this series the cover had a stereotypical left sided pedestal design and one of 16 flower pictures on the right. The volumes originally came within a labeled box. (An example is here.)

Interestingly the pedestal design area has been seen in beige (most common), blue, pink and this format was also published in ooze calf (least common).


18 Jan 2016 143

Petit Trianon Series

Q:  I recently purchased this book entitled "Marmion" by Sir Walter Scott. Any information you can provide about its provenance and value would be greatly appreciated.

A:  Your book was published in 1905-1906 as part of the Petit Trianon Series.

It is a reprint and originally came within a labeled box. See an example here.

During this format's run, the book covers had one of four flower designs.

It has nominal value only.


14 Jan 2016 48

Beauxarts Series

Q:  I was given this book by my Grandmother and am looking for information on it. Particularly if it is rare, what it's value may be and a market for trade. Silas Marner

A:  Your book was published as part of the Beauxarts Series between 1899-1901. As with all of the titles in this series, it is a reprint. This format was printed in a variety of color covers. It was originally sold within a labeled box.

This title is not very collectible and has little, if any, value.


12 Jan 2016 179

Vademecum Series

Q:  Hi, I've recently come across a copy of A Wonder Book from between 1890-1899. Attached are a few photos. I was hoping you could tell me a publishing date & a value, as I cannot seem to find a similar copy online; besides 1 rare $6,000.00 copy.

I look forward to hearing back from you (hopefully with good news), & thank you in advance for taking the time out of your day to look at my book.


A:  Your book is part of the Vademecum Series and was published in 1898. It is a reprint and originally came within a labeled box.

It is worth maybe a few dollars.


10 Jan 2016 57

Boys and Girls Classics

Q:  I have this book in my collection and just read about the series on your website. Am curious about its value. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

A:  This book is part of the Boys and Girls Classics Series.

The fifteen titles in this series were published between 1908 and 1926. They are all reprints from titles previously published within the Young People's Library.

The cover on this book is one of several different ones used. These volumes came within a floral decorated box.

Most of the titles in this series have little value but the Alice books are very collectible. $25-50 would be reasonable.


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