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Three Little Kittens - De Wolfe Fiske & Co. - Movable revolving vovelle cover 1899

DeWolfe, Fiske & Co., Boston, 1899 movable book
Antique Vintage Movable vovelle Book Three Little Kittens - De Wolfe Fiske & Co. -

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Three Little Kittens

The movable revolving volvelle cover shows 8 different scenes when turned

Publisher: DeWolfe, Fiske & Co., Boston, 1899

Copyrighted by the Niagara Lithograph Company in Buffalo, New York

1st Edition. 4to - over 9¾ - 12" tall. No date – found in 1899 catalog*

Oblong quarto. Boards with thin cloth spine. Not paginated, (28) pp, ink illustrations.

Excellent Fine condition – see photos

Collectors Corner:

Collect them all:

Very rare, likely published in only one edition. During our 30 years of collecting, we have only seen two. Nevertheless, *according to The Publishers' Trade List Annual, Volume 1 R. R. Bowker Company, 1899 - page 85, there were 6 titles in this series of “Revolving Toy Books” each having a “perforated revolving disk on the cover showing 8 amusing scenes”.
The titles were:

The Night Before Christmas
The Story of The Three Bears
The Story of The Three Little Pigs
The Three Little Kittens (shown here)
The House That Jack Built
Picture Land A, B, C

About the publisher:
DeWolfe, Fiske & Co., Boston, 1880-1905
DeWolfe, Fiske, and Company was founded in Boston in 1880 by Perez Morton DeWolfe ( 1850-1931 ) and Charles F. Fiske(passed 1930). They succeeded publisher "Albert W. Lovering". They located at 365 Washington in 1880, then expanded to 361 Washington Street in 1882. They also ran the Archway Bookstore where they sold new books to individuals and to libraries and acted as a wholesaler for small-town booksellers." Perez DeWolfe, the figurehead of De Wolfe, Fiske & Co., was known for his distinctive and imposing appearance. He was quite tall, over six feet, and had a notably stocky build, weighing around 250 pounds. His look was completed with a full beard, and he was often seen enjoying his meerschaum pipe.(Massachusetts Library Association, Year, p. 83)

.In 1891 they established a branch at 18 Astor Place NYC. . . During the 1890's it was well known for its large chromo-covered juveniles. In 1905 the firm was renamed DeWolfe and Fiske, at that time it ceased publishing, and became a retail and wholesale book-selling business. The firm later became a subsidiary of Chadwick-Miller Inc., of Canton, Massachusetts

Early on we get this information from (International Publishing Company, 1885, p. 180)
De Wolfe, Fiske & Co., a prominent bookstore located at 365 Washington Street in Boston. This bookstore is highlighted as one of the key features of Boston’s commercial landscape, particularly noted for its impressive collection of books. The establishment is housed in a large, well-maintained four-story building. It's recognized for its well-organized interior that facilitates the efficient handling and selling of books. They keep up with the latest publications, ensuring that all new releases are available to their customers at competitive prices. The bookstore's operations are not just limited to sales; they also buy entire libraries and collections of books.
It also mentions that the store is not only a business but a cultural hub, widely recognized by the literary community. It serves as a meeting place for those who appreciate literature and has become a well-known location for sourcing books in both the United States and internationally. This has helped them build strong trade relationships, particularly in Canada, thanks to Mr. P. M. De Wolfe, who is well-established in business circles. Meanwhile, Mr. Charles F. Fiske, a Boston native with over fifty years of experience in the city, is known for his integrity and business acumen. Overall, the business is built on honorable practices and is considered one of the most substantial and esteemed in the trade.

About the firm that they succeeded. "Albert W. Lovering": Lovering, known as the "gift-book" seller from Boston, faced financial hardships, declaring bankruptcy in 1876 and again in 1879. To mitigate losses from an overstock of books, Lovering introduced a promotional strategy that involved giving away prizes with book purchases. This marketing effort required a significant cash investment, around $50,000. Financial records show a stark contrast in the company's status within a year: from having $19,000 in the bank in January 1875 to a mere sixty-two cents in January 1876. This decline led to Publishers' Weekly labeling him as one of the "predestined bankrupts."(Boston Public Library, Year, p. 145) Despite these challenges, Lovering continued in the book trade, eventually operating a bookstore at 781 Broadway in New York. nd retiring in 1905.

Bruccoli, Matthew J., ed. "Dictionary of Literary Biography, Volume 49: American Literary Publishing Houses, 1638-1899." Gale, 1986, p. 119.

The Bookseller, Newsdealer and Stationer, Volume 22, Excelsior Publishing House, 1905 page 535

Boston Public Library. (Year). The Boston Public Library Quarterly, 6(1), 145.

International Publishing Company. (1885). Leading Manufactures and Merchants of the City of Boston: And a Review of the Prominent Exchanges. International Publishing Company. Page 180

Massachusetts Library Association. (Year). In Massachusetts Library Association Bulletin (Vol. 43-44, p. 83).


Product Code: A-60

Antique Vintage Movable vovelle Book