New-York: Toy and Song Book Repository [John Slater], 204 Chatham Square, [between 1849-1855]. First edition. 12mo, self-wrappered pamphlet with the spine overstitched at an early date, 8 pages. Illus. Some spotting and soiling and minor wear and toning; a good, sound copy. Item #16870
What appears to be a relatively early separate appearance in America of this English-language adaptation of the classic Perrault fairy tale of the kindly daughter who helps a fairy draw water from a well and is granted the boon of diamonds and roses falling from her mouth whenever she speaks; her "pert hussy" of a sister attempts to bully the fairy into giving her the same gift--but instead from her mouth drop vipers and frogs. (Princes come into the story and the tale ends as might be expected.) The charming crude woodcuts include such details as a dog perplexed by the frogs and vipers. At the head of the title, "Slater's Toy Books," a series that turns up in only one title (King Crooked-Chin) at AAS; OCLC turns up scattered single examples or perhaps two copies of five titles only in Slater's Toy Books series but not this one. The comprehensive AAS directory of the children's book trade puts John Slater at the 204 Chatham St. address between 1849 and 1855. OCLC and the AAS catalog turn up McLoughlin Bros. editions likely dating from the 1860s and 1870s.