134A: Burgundy tooled leather children’s storybook set sold w encyclopedia 1950s

The books were regular sized, approximately 8.5 x 11″ and were numbered. Maybe 8 to 12 of them? Illustrations were art deco or art nouveau (I get them confused). Not lots of vivid colors. Heavy black lines/white/gray/yellow/rose colors. Each book had stories and poems. I am not positive that they came with a set of encyclopedias, but that is my general recollection. I could have been World Book or Encyclopaedia Britannica, since we acquired both around the same time. Any ideas?

36 thoughts on “134A: Burgundy tooled leather children’s storybook set sold w encyclopedia 1950s

  1. Kerry McDaniel

    Could it be the Grolier Book of Knowledge series? The ones I had back in the sixties had cream and burgundy binding with gold lettering, and I believe they were part of the Grolier encyclopedia set we got back then (not actually in the set but maybe sold as an add-on.)

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  2. Celia

    I think you are right that it has to do with Book of Knowledge. Thank you. I also think these books were an auxiliary set of storybooks that came with the set of encyclopedias. They were children’s stories and poems/nursery rhymes. I think the year was mid to late 1950s. If anyone can help me find them, I would be extremely grateful!

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  3. Celia Almes

    I found them!! So they probably weren’t sold with a set of encyclopedias. The name of the set is “Book Trails” and it has 8 volumes. Red leatherette hard cover embossed with a knight on steed on each cover.

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  4. Dormilona

    These sound very much like a set of books we got in the the 1950’s along with the Encyclopedia Americana. But I’m pretty sure there were 12 books in our set. I remember Volume 1 was for very small children, and Volume 7 (I think) was mysteries. It included a wonderful mystery story about two boys visiting Dartmoor (with illustrations by Henry Pitz), which I used to read over and over. Also a rather terrifying story called “Miss Hinch.”

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  5. Peggy

    OMG. I’ve been searching for these for years!!
    I think Arthur Rackham and Gustav Tenggren must have illustrated some of these or very similar illustrations. And there was a story about how toys could talk one day a year?

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  6. angie

    I have been looking for this set also,,,they had the most beautiful pictures and had stories of fairies, brownies, and mermaids. There were other stories too,,each book had a topic. I would love to find them again and buy the set.

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    1. LILY C GARZA

      YES.I LOVED THE BOOKS SO MUCH i STARTED READING AT THREE YEARS OLD AND I REMEMBER THE ENCYCLOPEDIA MAN CAME OVER TO OUR HOUSE AND I REMEMBER MY MOM BOUGHT THE RED TOOLED LEATHER BOOKS I GUESS WHEN SHE BOUGHT THE ENCYCLOPEDIA BOOK BOOKS WHICH WERE DARK BROWN LEATHER I GUESS THEY ADDED THE CHILDREN’S BOOKS PLUS A BOOK SHELF TO GO WITH THE BOOKS.ONE OF THE CHILDREN’S BOOK HAD A PICTURE OF LITTLE RED RIDING HOOD WHICH WAS IN COLOR, WHICH WAS THE FAIRY TALE BOOK.PLEASE ME IF YOU KNOW WHERE I COULD BUY THEM. I OFTEN THINK OF THESE BOOKS. THE ONES WERE GIVEN TO GOODWILL.

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      1. Kath Peiffer

        I know this is an older post, but please! If anyone gives you more info, please reply here again. I long to read these little gems once again.

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        1. Kari

          I have a 10 book set of groiler classic short stories. The first book is all Fairy Tales and the last one is poetry. There is an animal book with stories all about animals….I still have these if interested.

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  7. Jerine P Watson

    Book Trails – the set – is the reason I am still an addict of book reading and just holding a hefty book brings me peace. Several years ago I spotted a used set – of course – and didn’t buy it and should have – and now can’t find another…want to give a set to my great-grandchildren before I leave the planet!! If anyone sees this and stumbles upon another set in not too shabby condition, please let me know?? Thank you so much!!

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  8. Pamela Evanger

    Looking for old 50s childrens encyclopedias..stories incuded a story about Duncan, a story about visiting the zoo with alphabet letters , a train story with mrs snodgrass..many other beautifully illustrated stories…i think they were Brown, leather bound, and there were 2 editions

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  9. Alan England

    I’m looking for a similar series of books. Here are as many facts I can supply:
    Red hard covers. 10+ volumes. Each volume was dedicated to a certain age group. Not many colors inside but the binder had small color illustrations. The series was sold with a set of ecyclopedias and a small two shelf bookcase, walnut maybe? One of books had “The Five Chinese Brothers”. Another included how to do trick photography. Gosh I wish I could remember more. Oh, yes-sold door to door in the late Fifties to early Sixties. Please help me track these down!

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    1. Judy

      I am positive about this, since I still have the Book Trails set; they were my first books. They came with Britannica Encyclopedias, and there were 8 volumes. They progressed from Volume 1 entitled, “Baby Feet,” with nursery rhymes and short, short stories; all the way through the 8th volume, which was intended for kids 10-12 years old (I think it’s “Adventures in Storyland”). Contrary to another comment in this thread, these books had many pages with beautiful, bright, bold illustrations of many colors, which drew my attention as a very small child. What a great set of books.

      I am sad to say, as I got out Volume 1 the other day to give to my middle son’s first baby, I discovered that it has developed “foxxing” on about 50% of the pages. Not sure I’ll be able to afford to get that removed, and I haven’t looked at the rest of them yet.

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      1. Judy

        I remember now; the 8th Volume is “On the High Road to Adventure!” I can post all the titles tomorrow; I’m at work right now. (Woops!)

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  10. RobinS

    Not sure whether this is relevant for the OP but the children’s set sold with the Encyclopedia Americana was called The Bookshelf for Boys and Girls and is a dark red 10 volume set published by the University Society. it includes volumes on stories, poems, fairy tales,art, and activities.

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  11. Judy C.

    Haha. When I got them out again, I see there are two in each level . Two each for Baby Feet; Through the Wildwood; Enchanted Lands; and On the High Road to Adventure. Love them!

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  12. Debbie Bertram

    My grandparents, in the 50’s, had a set of 12, I think, of nursery rhythms, stories and one volume was of songs with the music. This set was sold along with encyclopedias.

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  13. Kim

    I had as a child in the 50’s a set of red bound britannica style books of fairy tales, Aesop’s fables, etc with exceptional artwork. I have been looking for this set all my life. It was truly a treasure for me. The books were broken down A-Z and I believe were 8 to 12 volumes. If anyone knows where to purchase these sets please let me know. Thank you

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    1. Kath R. Peiffer

      We had a similar set in the ’50s, the Children’s Hour set that came w/encyclopedias. Red, 16 volumes, I loved this set! It was quite similar in themes to what youve described, and to a set offered by Groliers. (my set was edited by Margaret Barrows) Anyhow-Ebay has volumes from all these sets available.

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  14. Jeri Sherfy

    Yes! Mama bout the World Book Encyclopedia and this children’s 12 volume set! I loved those books and would buy the set today if I could find the whole set. We’re they called The Children’s Treasury or something like that?

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  15. Sandy

    When my parents bought the Encyclopedia Britanica in the 1950’s they also got a set of 10 burgundy fiction books titled Treasure Island, Robin Hood, Black Beauty, King Arthur, Heidi, Anderson’s Fairy Tales, Alice in Wonderland, Robinson Crusoe, Tom Sawyer and Arabian Nights. I still have them. I don’t know what the covers are but a couple of them are coming apart. Does anyone know if they are worth anything?

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  16. Betty Lou percy

    I am looking for the Fairy tail book for my husband. He said he loved the illustrations of the book. When he was 15 his house caught on fire and lost everything. I hope I can find this book for our anniversary. Just don’t know the name. It came with the encyclopedia . Help if you can please. He thinks the cover was a dark brown or burgundy.

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    1. Toni Baez

      I’ve searched for that book also. The illustrations have been engraved in my mind for 67 years . I won’t give up searching. There has to be a set of the green covered children’s británica books somewhere .

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    1. Kim

      The childcraft set is what we had bought with the encyclopedia Britannica. Would love for them to reprint those. Rose white and rose red, the sugar plum tree etc.

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    2. Evelyn Rasmussen

      Yes! I’ve been thinking about the Childcraft set with all of its wonderful fables since my brother & I used to light a candle in the dark & read the story of the Troll Under the Bridge. I’m sure I’d enjoy reading them all again in my 83 years!

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  17. Dianne

    My mom bought Encyclopedia Britannica in the 50s and for a little extra got a set of children’s books shades of green for younger children and shades of blue for older kids. The first one had Mother Goose Nursery Rhymes, the second had stories for the next age, like Chicken Little.
    I’ve been trying to find out what the set was called, I’ve never seen it since I was young.

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    1. HEATHER DELAAT

      Hi there, i have been doing alot of searching i have finaly found the 12 book set that came with the encyclopedia set my mom bought from a travelling salesman. The books were colored green to blue. They are called My Book house book set. Many different versions out there but we had the ” rainbow” edition. I want this set as i want the same pictures i had as a child. Plus, later versions edit a few stories to make them politically correct. Anyway, hope you find a set. I will buy one, preferably rainbow set! Good luck, Heather

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  18. HEATHER DELAAT

    Hi there, i have been doing alot of searching i have finaly found the 12 book set that came with the encyclopedia set my mom bought from a travelling salesman. The books were colored green to blue. They are called My Book house book set. Many different versions out there but we had the ” rainbow” edition. I want this set as i want the same pictures i had as a child. Plus, later versions edit a few stories to make them politically correct. Anyway, hope you find a set. I will buy one, preferably rainbow set! Good luck, Heather

    Reply
  19. Carrie Ann

    I bought a set for $150.00 about 2 years ago. They did come with a set of Encyclopedia Brittanica … my Mom bought them back in the late 50s or early 60s. She loaned hers out and never got them back. We were just looking at my set last night and she told the story again about them coming with her off white with gold lettering encyclopedias. We s add Lao had a (2) book set of childrens books … one red and one yellow. I’d love to find them too.

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