[the fine V. Starrett copy] New-York: Wm. H. Murphy, n.d. [ca 1851]. Original pictorial light blue wrappers.
As enumerated on the rear cover, this is the second of the six booklets in this series of "moral and entertaining fables for children"; the lead-off fable, for which this booklet is named, is "The Thief and the Dog" -- which on the front cover is misspelled "THEIF". Francis Channing Woodworth (1812-1859) was a Connecticut vicar who was also a printer; he wrote juvenile fiction both as "Uncle Frank" and as "Theodore Thinker." It is believed that this series of booklets came out in 1851; in any case it was between 1847 and 1855, which constituted the life of Wm. Murphy's publishing activity.~This copy is in light blue wrappers; perhaps all of these "Theif" booklets were in blue, but some of the six titles were in tan or yellow instead. Condition is remarkably close to fine -- a little erosion of the spine paper at each end, but otherwise this little booklet intended for children is an amazing survival. Provenance: at the top of the front cover is the signature of Vincent Starrett (1886-1974), the Toronto-born Chicago newsman who was one of the founders of the Baker Street Irregulars, and the author of many pieces about Sherlock Holmes. Item #13638