One of the most fascinating aspects of working with antique books is the sense of history that is contained within them. I frequently work with books that are 150 years old which I can often take for granted, one thing that reminds me of the history of these items are inscriptions or dedications found on the inside covers. I always check new books thoroughly for these or items tucked into its pages as makeshift bookmarks. Occasionally I get lucky and find an address or name that I can track through census searches and the internet
Here is an example of one inscription from a 1920s copy of Tom Browns Schooldays owned by a William George Radford given to him from his mother. The inscription so far as I can read it is ‘William George Radford, Mythalen, Station Road, Polesworth, 1926. With best love from mam to Billy’ Although I could not track down the actual address in the inscription I was able to find many Radfords living in Polesworth right up to this day.
Oh and a last note before brining this blog entry to a close. Last month I talked about a Keats poetry book and the attractive red book uploaded to my site. Having been sold the item is no longer available however there are many other poetry books available and another beautiful Keats Poetry book listed HERE.