Campus Units

English

Document Type

Article

Publication Version

Published Version

Publication Date

2015

Journal or Book Title

James Fenimore Cooper Society Journal

Volume

26

Issue

2

First Page

11

Last Page

13

Abstract

Dissatisfied with what he viewed as the grotesque and morally corrupt content of much children's literature available at the time—which were mostly reprints of European titles—the New England printer Samuel Griswold Goodrich set out to compose and market books expressly intended for a young American readership. He began in 1819 by creating a handful of rather unsophisticated chapbooks intended to impart historical and moral lessons. In 1827, Goodrich published the first of his so-called Peter Parley books, which are narrated by a fictional grandfatherly Bostonian of that name. These books became extremely popular on both sides of the Atlantic, and they would serve as a powerful influence upon the minds of young Americans and upon the development of the nation's literary culture. As A.S.W. Rosenbach—in his formative study of early American children's literature— contends, the advent of Goodrich's Peter Parley series was "one of the most momentous and influential events in the history of American children's literature in the nineteenth century" (xlviii).

Comments

This is an article from the James Fenimore Cooper Society Journal 26 (2015): 11. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner

James Fenimore Cooper Society

Language

en

File Format

application/pdf

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