Horsefeathers And Other Curious Words

Here we have another rescued book from the local high school library.  Word origins and regional words are an interest of mine, so I’m pleased that my wife saw fit to grab this book during last year’s library purge. The publisher page places this printing from 1986, with the original publishing date at 1958.HF_full cover

It was written by Charles Earle Funk- you might recognize that name because your family (like mine) may have owned a set of Funk And Wagnalls Encyclopedias.  If you’re too young to know what a set of Encyclopedias is, well, it was a set of books that were purchased for the home- a set of references that are now completely archaic thanks to our ability to grab any information immediately from the internet.

bindery sticker

I especially like the sticker pasted to the lower left corner of the cover.  It reads “Crawford Bindery, 2249 14th Street, AKRON OHIO.”  The book does appear to have been rebound. The endpapers do not match the page papers, the cover boards are in gorgeous condition, and the cover was obviously cut from the old cover and adhered to the front board.  My only guess is that this copy of the book was donated to the library after it was rebound in Akron- I doubt any library would have gone to the expense of getting this particular title rebound.

Digging a little deeper I found a great many listings for the Bindery company online.  I called the phone number but alas, it is disconnected.  I assume the business is now shuttered, but I did run across a pertinent obituary for Mary Crawford stating that the Bindery was established in 1954.

publisher page

The book itself is a delight.  I always appreciate any tome that can be thrown open to a random page, thus providing a small nugget of wisdom or a brief chortle.  It is still in paperback print, but it may be worth seeking out a hardbound copy at your local used book shop.  Leave it out on the kitchen table for guests, you will definitely have something to chat over as you sip your tea.  ~TH~

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