326T: 1950’s young detective gang? (Solved!)

I was in elementary school in the early 90’s and remember reading a series of novel/short stories in class from a book series. They were similar to Encyclopedia Brown and Nate the Great, but the time frame of the books was more low tech (they had flashlights or torches I think, but don’t remember TV ever being mentioned), probably circa 1930’s to 1950’s so a little before Encyclopedia Brown time frame.

I remember 3 distinct stories that happened. The main characters were young, elementary school aged, and engaged in small town mysteries and adventures. One of the stories involved one person from this young gang following someone or something into a local cave and the main character followed them/him but tied raw liver meat to his shoes and told a friend if he didn’t come out to get a police officer and a tracking dog to find him from the scent of the liver meat on his shoes. They ended up finding him and the person lost in the cave.

A second story involved a new teacher the main character didn’t like and he intended to frame him by making him appear to be an alcoholic and planting alcohol in his house. The plot may be located in a baptist southern town as the main character thought the alcohol conviction would be a death sentence for the guy. I don’t remember much of the rest of that specific plot except that Mint Schnapps were part of the story and how the teacher was purportedly covering up his alcohol breath. The teacher found him out and apologized to the kid that he did not like him being his teacher but the town had appointed him, the protagonist reconciled with him eventually.

A third minor story was the protagonist forgot to study for an exam and tried to contract mumps from a friend of his who was out sick that same week. He snuck over to his friends house and asked him to breath in his face repeatedly. The protagonist was young, coming of age, used m’am and pal a lot in his vocabulary. The book or series may have been published in the 70’s or 80’s but I don’t remember a whole lot of technology being used in the stories though, and the prohibition aspect lead me to believe it is older. It could be Encyclopedia Brown but I’ve read through what I believe to be all of the book plots and didn’t see it.

326L: Beautiful Dresses From Night Sky

I live in the UK and I am looking for a Children’s anthology of stories (I think), which I had as a child in the 1950s (it may have been older).   It included a story about three poor princesses called Cordelia, Sylvia and Arabella who were invited to a ball but had to make their dresses from old curtains.  The animals and birds helped to make them beautiful dresses from the night sky, sashes of rainbows, ice crowns and stars for their hair and fluffy cloud cloaks.  It was a lovely story, illustrated with black and white drawings.  I have been searching for it for years with no luck.  Maybe someone might recognize it and be able to tell me more.

326D: Air Force Pilot Takes On Dragon In Storm Cloud

Short fantasy/sci-fi story in an anthology aimed at young readers in the late 70s/early 80s - I seem to remember reading it in late elementary school, though it could have been middle school. Story was about an Air Force pilot who lost a friend to a dragon in a storm cloud, but no one believed him, so he stole a plane and went back up to kill the dragon. He was catatonic and white-haired when the plane landed, and everyone thought he was just crazy, until they watched his gun-camera footage of his attack runs on the dragon.

325V: Funny Poems with Black and White Illustrations

This book I believe would have been published within 1960-80. It was a collection of limericks and poems, black and white pictures only on rough pulpy paper, hardcover woven material,off white. No slip cover (sleeve) photo as I believe it likely had a slip cover at one time, but not once I had it as a child.

The illustrations, there was one for each, I think and they were very character based and they were all black and white. The very closest stories and illustrations that I can find that bear a resemblance is “Backward Bill” by Silverstein.

There is only one poem in the collection that I remember clearly. The illustration was of a skinny man walking on his hands in the sand. He has a pail hanging from his foot by the handle. The poem talks about this certain man collecting periwinkles on the beach and using his foot to carry the pail. I can’t remember the reason he has for doing this. I do remember it being a very comical book.

It would mean great deal if you were able to find this book. If there are any other details that come I can let you know.

325N: Children’s book of holiday stories from 60’s/70’s?

I was born in the late 70’s and my mom would read to me a used children’s book of holiday stories with anthropomorphic characters. I remember an owl (or maybe a family of owls); a mouse that ate paste in the Valentine’s story; a Halloween story and a Christmas story. I seem to remember the cover was orange and the illustrations were in black & white with a dash of orange. The illustrations were definitely done in the unique style of the late ’60s/early ’70s. Any ideas? Thanks!

325M: Illustrated Stories Collection, Perhaps Golden Book?

I am hoping you can help me track down the following book:

  1.  I am not sure of the title.
  2. I believe it was a collection of Golden Book stories, but I am not too sure. My grandmother read it to me frequently in the 1980’s. I believe it was a yellow, hard cover children’s book with a collection of illustrated short stories. Here are the stories I remember:

2a. A lion at a zoo has a cold. The kids would pick on him because he had lost his roar while sick.

2b. A young boy wants to play with the older kids, so he puts on many many layers of clothing and fools them. The story talks about how hot he is in the summer heat with all the clothes. As he runs around, the layers start to fall off, revealing his true self.

2c. Three sisters live in an apartment. One is fat, one is skinny. I think I remember the story takes place in summer and the fat sister was too hot and wanted the window open while the skinny sister was too cold and wanted it shut.

2d. I think there was a story about firetrucks or possibly a tug boat.

I wish I could remember more. I have been searching for this book for about 20 years …

325D: Huge Book of Bedtime Fairy Tales

My book of bedtime stories? Huge light blue book with pictures of the characters on front and inside the cover. Beautiful thick pages with each first letter having vines/ flowers. One fairy tale was about a poor boy who had to do heaps of tasks in order to marry the king’s daughter. Like row a boat on land and catch heaps of rabbits? Ect. I think another story may have been called Princess Gloria. She was locked in a dungeon and had to sort through millions of coloured threads. Another story was called The Fountain of Youth. And I think The Little Match Girl was also in this book. Please, please help me find this book. I have been searching for it for 20 years. So looking forward to hearing from you.

324Y: Fairies and Giants and Creatures In One Massive Compilation

I am looking for a children’s book I read in the late 70s or early 80s that was about fairies and giants and other mystical creatures. It was huge (to a 6 year old!), 13 to 15 inches in height & hundreds of pages printed on very thin tissue-like paper that was pastel multi-coloured, in sections. A pink section, then a yellow section, then a pale green section, etc. I believe the coloured sections coordinated with the sections of the book which i think were divided into “stories about giants”, “stories about fairies”. It may have had “A Great Big Book….” or “The Big Book of….” in the title. It was large print with pictures here and there.

Thank you!!

324Q: Aesop’s Fables and Fairy Tale Collection

Looking for an illustrated hardcover children’s book, a collection of fairy tales from the late 1970s to the mid 1980s. It contained stories from Hans Christian Anderson (including The Princess and the Pea), the Grimm Brothers, and other authors. It included The Happy Prince by Oscar Wilde. It also had a section of Aesop’s Fables. The table of contents separated out the Aesop’s Fables from the other types of stories. Please help me find this book, thank you so much!

324L: A Hidden Room Mystery Story

1960’s-1970’s YA mystery short story–people search a castle for a missing keep or room wherein may be hidden a fortune.  Many people search.  They decide to put a cloth in each window as they search; then they can see from the outside which window has no cloth and is therefore the hidden room.  The story is possibly from one of the Alfred Hitchcock Presents Anthologies. It certainly had that feel.   Although many others are searching this castle for a missing keep or a room in a keep, only one person finds it.  There is some sort of secret entrance, I recall.  When the finder discovers the entrance and room, another character (the bad guy) goes with him and murders him there and “hides” the secret entrance to the room again.

 I recall (or believe I recall) a line at the end—part of the thoughts of the skeptical castle groundskeeper, I think– “there was no Norman keep.”