16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Saturday, March 16, 1912: Ruth went to Milton this morning. I made an apron today. Started to read a book this evening. The sequel of which I read about three years ago.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
Hmm. . . what was Grandma reading? She probably was reading adult books—but since she said that she’d read the other book in the series three years previously maybe they were children’s stories.
I don’t know which adult series were popular a hundred years ago—but I can think of several children’s series.
Little Women, Little Men and other books in the series by Louisa May Alcott are classics that have retained their appeal over the years. The series was published between 1868 and 1886.
The Bobbsey Twin series of adventure stories by Laura Lee Hope were published between 1904 and 1979. Laura Lee Hope is a pseudonym used by several different authors over the years.
The Elsie Dinsmore series by Martha Finley were published between 1967 and 1905. Elsie’s mother was dead, and Elsie faced many moral conflicts (and seemed to constantly feel guilty for one minor offense or another) as she grew up in her grandparent’s home.
An aside–Grandma WAS NOT reading the Nancy Drew series (first book published in 1930) , the Hardy Boys (first book published in 1927), or the Betsy and Tacy series (first book published in 1940).