Inscribe Your Gift Book

The Prospector by Ralph Connor, A Little Book of Western Verse Eugene Field, Streams in the Desert Cowman

Three books from my collection with inscriptions.

Streams In The Desert

Inscriptions in Streams In The Desert published 1943

Do you write on the end page in the books you give to others?  Have you ever received a book from someone to find an inscription on an end page?  I don’t think I’ve ever received a book from my sister without her writing something on the front end page where she addresses me, writes something like “you’re going to love this”, and indicates the occasion along with her name.  As a book collector and seller I often come across this and very often find it related to a Christmas book.

One of the more interesting aspects of this practice is the continued handing down of a book and that being documented in these inscriptions.  The photos at the top of this post are of Streams In The Desert by Mrs. Chas. E. Cowman.  The first inscription was Christmas 1944 to “Mother” from “Beth”.  This book was later presented in 1971 by the same Beth to Elizabeth after the

death of her mother.  Elizabeth then presented the book to Vera Jean in 1973.


On a trip to Canada in 2016 I found The Prospector by Ralph Connor published in 1904.  The first inscription was simply the name and date of the original owner.  He appears to also have written his address but only indicated “City” as the name of his city.  The book was given on Christmas day to Walt in 1995.

One of my favorite books is A Little Book of Western Verse by Eugene Field published in 1899.  It is packed with poems of a variety of topics.  This book of poems was originally owned beginning March 7, 1900 by someone with the initial of “C”, at least that’s my best guess.  The book was later given by Carol to Mrs. Sheldrake on April 12, 1938.  Next it was presented to Mrs. Bartness on Mother’s day May 10, 1963.

The next time you’re looking for a unique gift for someone, consider passing on a book that’s been in your family for a long time.  If you don’t have a book that’s been passed down from generation to generation, consider finding one at a local antique mall or used book store.  Add to the inscriptions knowing that someone may read it many years from now.  A gift like this can easily be accompanied with a gift card to a coffee shop that offers a cozy place to read.

Nobody Wanted Anthony

Anthony was not wanted.  He went to a convention held by his company where the employees were being assigned to various locations.  Unfortunately, the meeting was over and he had no assignment.  Imagine being in your twentys, part of an organization, and not having any assignment.  I can’t imagine he felt too good.

Antonius Greco

St. Anthony of Padua ended up going to a hermitage where he fasted and prayed daily in a cave.  After about a year he was ordained at a monastery with other Franciscans and some Dominicans.  Fortunately they failed to plan adequately and needed a speaker at the last-minute when they gathered for their celebration dinner.  By the grace of God, Anthony was chosen to give the speech.  Have you ever been asked to make a speech without know that you would be speaking?  This event marked the birth of a preacher.  Anthony impressed everyone with his speaking abilities and no longer went without an assignment.

Perhaps putting Anthony on the spot caused him to do his best.  Perhaps fasting and praying daily was the key.  Either way, it was the will of God that Anthony became the saint that we still remember today, almost 800 years after his death.

Enjoy inspiration from St. Anthony and find the good in today.  Saint Anthony of Padua’s feast day is June 13.  A lot of background, stories, and prayers are found on Anthony by searching with your favorite search engine.