Book submission: Guy Harris, The Runaway

Title: Guy Harris, The Runaway
Author: Castlemon, Harry
Publication date: New York, 1887
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS 1694 .F15G8
Submitted by: Patricia

L Forg
Harry Castlemon is the pen name for American author Charles Austin Fosdick. He was born in New York and lived in Westfield with his wife, Sarah Elizabeth Stoddard, until their deaths. He served in the Union Navy during the Civil War, and began writing as a teenager. Castlemon’s writing was made up of children’s literature – specifically adventure-style stories aimed towards young boys.

The gift inscription reads:

Merry Christmas
To Arthur
From Eva

Book submission: The Great K. & A. Train Robbery

Title: The Great K. & A. Train Robbery
Author: Leicester Ford, Paul
Publication date: New York, 1897
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS 1692 .G74 1897
Submitted by: Patricia L Forg
Paul Leicester Ford was an American writer who was born in Brooklyn. Ford was mostly famous for his biographies, including those of George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. Among his own novels, Ford is also known for having edited works by Thomas Jefferson. Ford was shot and murdered in 1902 by his brother, Malcolm Webster Ford, and is buried in Sleepy Hollow, New york.

The inscription on the front of the first page reads:

Helen Edwards Bercry (?)
July 1899

From Ms. Goodrich [note: perhaps Mr. Goodrich?]

Book submission: American Boyhood

Title: American Boyhood
Author: Biddle, Horace P.
Publication date: 1881
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS1096.B83 A5 1881 cop.1
Submitted by: Alexandra K. Janezic
Horace P. Biddle was born in 1811 in Fairfield County, Ohio. He became a lawyer and served as a judge in Logansport, Indiana from 1846-1852. In addition to being a judge he was also a poet—he contributed to a number of periodicals including the Southern Literary Messenger and Ladies Repository. Family friend, Sarah S. Pratt, has described his poems as such: “The judge was so saturated with the classics that his verse was always based on love, or hair, or eyes, or grief, or “memoree,” now the much-loved theme of radio tenors. No Hoosier schoolboy would have recited one of Biddle’s poems. They lack virility, but his prose was superior.” Biddle bought an island on the Wabash River in Logansport, Indiana where his home was situated. Pratt described his home as ”a roomy, rambling dwelling which year by year housed his ever-growing library and collection of art treasures. He might be called an early patron of the arts in Indiana for he was an enthusiast about all that was fine.” His other interests included music. Biddle invented an instrument he entitled the tetrachord that was closely related to the violin family.


This particular copy of American Boyhood was donated to an Indiana State Soldiers home by the author. It also features a list of the Soldier’s home library rules.

Book submission: A Sheaf of Papers

Title: A Sheaf of Papers
Author: Appleton, Thomas Gold
Publication date: Boston, Robert Brothers 1875
Library: The University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS1039.A5.S5 1875
Submitted by: Beth B.
Thomas Gold Appleton was born in Boston in 1812. He was known as a traveler, artist and a poet and traveled to Niagara Falls in 1842, Paris in 1840s and Europe in the 1930s. Appleton’s sister Frances married Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in 1843. After Frances’ death from catching fire in 1861, Appleton helped care for his nieces and nephews. In 1884 Appleton died of Pneumonia.

Book submission: The Good Time Coming

Title: The Good Time Coming
Author: T.S. Arthur (Timothy Shay)
Publication date: 1855
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS1039.A77 G63 1855
Submitted by: Beth B.
Mrs. Mary A Pinnell, Portland. Me. September 6, 1877 (written with a pointed pen in copperplate letters)
Desire not to live long, but to live well: How long we live, not years, but actions tell
Mrs. D.A. Clements
Twenty-two years after publication of “The Good Time Coming” by famous author T.S. Arthur this edition fell into the possession of Mrs. Mary A. Pinnell. A basic Internet search found no significant information about Mrs. Pinnell. I also, could not find any additional information about the second name Mrs. D.A. Clements. A great deal of information can be found on the author and his work with literary magazines and books. Timothy Shay Arthur worked at times with Edgar Allen Poe and was even considered more famous than him during that time in history. T.S. Arthur’s fame came from his publication of Arthur’s Home Gazette that catered to the families and middle-class Americans.

Book submission: Poems by H. F. Gould

Title: Poems by H. F. Gould
Author: H. F. Gould
Publication date: Boston 1836
Library: University of Iowa, Main Library
Call number: PS 1758.G4 1836 v.2
Submitted by: Kelli Ebensberger
H. F. Gould, or Hannah Flagg Gould, was an American poet known for covering topics such as American history and girls’ coming-of-age narratives (1789-1865). Some of her preserved works are Poems Volumes I & II, “Mary Dow, and The Little Beggar Girl” and “The Rising Monument”. This second volume is from a collection of poems by Miss H. F. Gould. In this copy of volume II, there are two marks of ownership: an inscription and a correction of a typo in the Table of Contents. The inscription inside the cover has unfortunately been partially (first name of owner and month) covered by the Library Catalogue Card and the barcode. The ink is somewhat readable from the back of the page and seems to read “Angela (?) R. Pope/ Jul. 31st 1837.” Also, the owner “Pope” made a correction to the table of contents for the page number correction for “The Yankee Tea Party”, crossing out the original number and writing “152”.

Book submission: My Roses

Title: My Roses
Author: French, Lucy
Publication date: Philadelphia, 1872
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS 1719.F6M8
Submitted by: Christine Ewert
Lucy Virginia French (born Lucy Virginia Smith and signs a L. Virginia French) was born on March 16th, 1825 in Accomac County, Virginia. She began her literary career by writing for the Louisville Journal under the pen name “L’Inconnue.” Her husband Colonel John Hopkins French of McMinnville met her, under her pen name, as a fan of her poetry. In 1852 she became the editor of the Southern Ladies Book in New Orleans. She became well-rounded in her literary mediums, writing for newspapers and magazines like Southern Homestead, the Rural Sun, the Sunny South, the Crusader, the Ladies Home, and the Southern Literary Messenger. My Roses was one of her two novels. She also wrote poetry and a tragic play, The Lady of Tula. Her diaries written during the Civil War reside in the Tennessee State Library’s archive and demonstrate her liberal sensibilities. Lucy was born into a wealthy family with a plantation and became a poet, editor, novelist, magazinist, and etc.
On the blank page before the title page is a signature (I cannot make the name out) and the date of Christmas, 1873. Additionally, on the inside of the front cover there is another name in pencil markings: Susan A. Thrasher, illegible writing, the the date of ____, 12th, 1886. On the title page in pencil there is “ucy” after the ‘L’ in L. Virginia French.

Book submission: Phoenixiana, or Sketches and Burlesques

Title: Phoenixiana, or Sketches and Burlesques
Author: Phoenix, John
Publication date: New York, 1856
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS1535.D53 P5 1856
Submitted by: Matthew Blackwell
Though he is largely forgotten today, George Horatio Derby (1823-1861) was one of the most popular American humorists of the nineteenth century. He published under several different pseudonyms, but he was most well known for his writings as John Phoenix, which were collected in Phoenixiana, or Sketches and Burlesques. This collection went through at least 11 editions in its first year (1856) and 25 total by 1890. It was read by such notables as William Makepeace Thackeray, General Ulysses S. Grant, and President Theodore Roosevelt (source: Dictionary of Literary Biography).

This 1856 copy of Phoenixiana features multiple inscriptions in at least two handwritings. An ownership inscription on the flyleaf reads “H.D.D.” On the recto of the frontispiece page there is an apparently anachronistic gift inscription that then reads, “To Peter A Dey, Esq. / from his friend / H.D. Downey, / Iowa City / Feb. 22, 1848.” Below this, in pencil, a note reads “See John Phoenix’ [?] / on its ‘central [?]’” Finally, a second ownership inscription on the title page reads “Peter A. Dey / 1858.”

Book submission: A Voyage to the Fortunate Isles, Etc.

Title: A Voyage to the Fortunate Isles, Etc.
Author: Piatt, Sarah Morgan Bryan
Publication date: Boston, 1874
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS 2581 .V9 1874
Submitted by: Steph rue
Sarah Morgan Bryan Piatt (1836-1919) was a critically acclaimed American poet, known for her melancholic and unconventional verse. Raised on a plantation in Lexington, Kentucky, she was educated at Henry Female College. By the time she married poet and diplomat John L. Piatt in 1861, Bryan was widely known as a poet. She published several volumes of poetry over the next 20 years, including A Woman’s Poems (1871), A Voyage to the Fortunate Isles and Other Poems (1874), and Dramatic Persons and Moods (1880). The Piatts moved to Ireland in 1882, where she published several more books. (Sources: Poetry Foundation, Encyclopaedia Britannica) A gift inscription reads: “To / Wife (?) Mary H. Putnam / From / J.W.C. /and he said “Surely this / is none other than the / House of God and this is / the Gate of Heaven.” And / they called the name / of that place “Bethel.” / July 26, 1874.” Traces of pressed leaves are found between pages 56-57, 74-75, and 80-81.

Book submission: Stories of Many Lands

Title: Stories of Many Lands
Author: Greenwood, Grace
Publication date: 1866
Library: University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS2247 .S7 1886
Submitted by: Matthew P. Brown
A bestselling journalist and author, “Grace Greenwood” was the pseudonym of Sara Jane Clarke Lippincott (1823-1904). A prolific Victorian writer, she partook of a sentimental aesthetic that reached a broad audience through national and international news coverage for adults, instructive works for children, and moralistic tales for all ages. Greenwood was a “magazinist,” supporting herself (and family) in the literary marketplace through periodical publishing and editing—short pieces that then translated to book publications. *Stories of Many Lands* is one such book publication, one of a series of successes for the children’s market that was borne of Greenwood’s success editing, with her spouse, a magazine for young readers called *The Little Pilgrim*. (Source: *Dictionary of Literary Biography*).

A gift inscription reads “To Elizabeth with best / wishes from / Leo [Les?] Hayes / Oct. 15th 1909.” A signature with formal calligraphy — “Rev. Henry T. Dewey” — is found on a small insert card, at page 113.

Book submission: The Good Time Coming

Title: The Good Time Coming
Author: Arthur, T.S.
Publication date: Philadelphia, 1855
Library: The University of Iowa Main Library
Call number: PS 1039.A77G63 1855
Submitted by: Amanda Rasmussen
Timothy Shay Arthur, also known as T.S. Arthur, was a popular 19th-century American author. Arthur was born in 1809 in New York but relocated to Baltimore, Maryland in his youth, were he would remain the majority of his adult life. Poor health in childhood caused Arthur’s education to be mostly self-taught and prohibited him from pursuing most professional careers. Finding a literary niche, Arthur started the Baltimore Literary Monument and became an editor for the Baltimore Merchant. In 1840, he joined the Washingtonian Temperance Society, which heavily influenced his literary works. Although Arthur authored a wealth of periodicals, short stories, and novels, he is best known for his temperance writings, the most famous of which is Ten Nights in a Bar-Room and What I Saw There (1854). Another pro-temperance work is, The Good Time Coming which was published the next year in 1855. Arthur passed away in his Philadelphia home in 1885.

Book submission: Williams’ Mansfield Directory, City Guide, and Business Mirror

Title: Williams’ Mansfield Directory, City Guide, and Business Mirror
Author: Williams, C. S.
Publication date: Mansfield, OH: D. Sturgess, 1858
Library: Columbia University (Butler Library)
Call number: 978.3M31 ZW
Submitted by: Tara Key
This city directory was given to Ebenezer Hazzard Swinney by James Estep Cox December 12, 1859. As shown below, they were like brothers. The second picture shows an inscription on page 72, under “Attorneys At Law,” which states that you could pay a dollar and have your name appear, but Cox ” put mine here for nothing.”

Swinney was a West Point grad (in his class entering in 1838 was Abner Doubleday) who became a Lt. Colonel of the 32nd Ohio Infantry, mustered in in Mansfield in 1861. He was the commander at the battles of Mc Dowell and Cross Keys, both Confederate victories and he seems to have given up his commission just in time to avoid being captured along with the rest of the 32nd at Harper’s Ferry in 1862. A history of the 32nd states, after the loss at Cross Keys, ” Lieut. Col. Sweeney [sic], commanding the regiment, did not get along well with Gen. Piatt, and in consequence there was much dissatisfaction throughout the regiment with the general commanding. ”

Cox was a lawyer in Mansfield, eventually becoming a judge and Justice of the Peace before his death in 1885. But the Census of 1870, in listing him as a lawyer, also lists him as insane. Below we see why!

In 1857, Cox was the author of a book: Exposition of Thomas W. Bartley, the present Chief Justice of the State of Ohio : showing him to be the second Haman that has made his appearance on this earth.

In an amazing and rambling 31 page statement, Cox says that he is aware the community thinks he is insane and yes, he has been committed to the Ohio Lunacy Asylum several times, and yes, someone may have been procured to assassinate him when he was the head of the Virginia Military School Lands and later in Fort Wayne, Indiana , and this was probably the cause of his defeat running for the office of Probate Judge, but Thomas Bartley, his accuser and Chief Justice of Ohio, is the second coming of the Haman.

Cox provides statements from other Mansfield residents establishing that he is well-loved and not insane. He refers to his friend, Honorable D. J. Swinney in one part of the screed, and Swinney attests to his “well-balanced mind” in a statement included in the book. Daniel Jackson Swinney is the father of Ebenezer Hazzard Swinney, and states in his defense of Cox that Cox is like a son to him.