Based upon the unparalleled collection of Children's Literature held at the American Antiquarian Society, this comprehensive directory contains 2,600 entries documenting the activity of individuals and firms involved in the manufacture and distribution of childrens books in the United States chiefly between 1821 and 1876.
Nationally known firms such as McLoughlin Bros. and non-profit publishers like the American Sunday-School Union are included, as well as prominent educational pioneers such as Elizabeth Palmer Peabody, Samuel Griswold Goodrich, and William Bentley Fowle. The directory also reflects the dynamic growth of childrens book production in the major publishing centers of Boston, New York, and Philadelphia--as well as in regional markets such as Rochester, Mobile, Atlanta, Cincinnati, and San Francisco. In short, the Directory documents both a book industry and an American childrens literature that are coming of age in the midst of stunning technological advances, sweeping social change, and great economic upheaval.
The main file (accessed through the Download button to the right) includes name, dates of operation, and address. Other files are as indicated. In toto, the files include: Heading (name of person or firm), Street address, City, State (two-digit postal code), Country (countries outside of the United States; used to document people/firms operating in both the United States and another country such as England); Chronological Date Range of Street Addresses; Role, and Notes. “Role” refers to the following terms:
- Amateur printer
- Amateur publisher
- Binding designer
- Copperplate printer
- Games publisher
- Ink maker
- Lithotyper (Stereotyper)
- Paper dealer
- Paper manufacturer
- Wholesale bookseller
The Note index file contains more information about the entry, such as dates of books issued by the individual/firm that are held at the American Antiquarian Society. This information is particularly useful to track the activity of persons and firms operating in towns and smaller cities for which no published street directory could be located. The Note index also includes citations to published sources about the individual or firm whenever available.
As many of these individuals and firms indexed also manufactured and distributed books for adults, the Directory will prove to be a crucial resource for researchers, collectors, book dealers, and virtually anyone seeking a better understanding of American publishing during the nineteenth century.
To search the dataset and for more information, consult the AAS Introduction to the collection.
Time Period: Start Date of Data Coverage
Time Period: End Date of Data Coverage
Date of this Version
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
American Antiquarian Society, "19th Century American Children's Book Trade Directory," - . 28. Philadelphia, PA: McNeil Center for Early American Studies [distributor], 2016. http://repository.upenn.edu
Additional Filesdateaddr.xlsx (413 kB)
Dates of operation and address for each firm, by HDID
heading.xlsx (272 kB)
HDID unique identifier for each firm; also includes additional notes
ref.xlsx (164 kB)
Key table of REFID, name, and HDID
role.xlsx (111 kB)
Key file for roles
roletypes.xlsx (9 kB)
Key file for role types
Date Posted: 14 June 2017