Title: The American Boy's Handy Book
Author: Daniel C. Beard
Yearly Count: 55
A book that probably most of us have seen, and looked at has come to stand the test of time over and over. The American Boy's Handy Book, originally published in 1882 has been released once again. I was lucky enough to get my hands on this one, a hardbound delight, that calls fourth the creative and adventurous juices from little boys to adults.
Here is the true testament to this book. My 4 year old constantly is heading over to our book shelf and taking it down, "to look at all the fun things that the boys do". He told me yesterday that his favourite is the owl snowman (p. 219). I have read through the amazing skill and beautiful illustrations of this book. The boats, telescopes, animal traps, and puppets are just a glimpse into this boyhood gem.
If we could just get our kids to ditch the electronics, we would see the creative outpour that would take place, boys playing un-organized sports, putting on plays after school- taking on the Home-Made masquerade and Theatrical Costumes (p. 293), or putting on the Puss-In-Boots adapted for puppet show play (p. 263). We parents and our kids need to come back to reality, what is really here and really important. Impromptu play and creativity is something this generation of kids won't see unless the parents take a stand against the modern couch-potato trends.
The author Daniel C. Beard also illustrated several Mark Twain stories. He received the Golden Eagle badge, the only one ever awarded by the Boy Scouts of America. Little followers across the nation have continued to learn from him and his fun exploits because of The American Boy's Handy Book. If you have a child who loves the outdoors, or who should...this is the book for your family. And being a girl who did all this stuff just as much (if not more) than my brother : girls could surely benefit too!!! If you have an adventurer, buy this book.
Tuttle Publishing: The American Boy's Handbook
Here are just some of the covers this book has worn:
original cover 1882