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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1856, by
CARLTON & PORTER,
in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the Southern District of
Reed 8-16-49 olier Flage
NE of the most difficult
tasks of literary labor is to prepare suitable books for children. Very few of the many writers, whose productions are found
the catalogues of our juvenile books, can be said to have been even tolerably successful in their undertakings. Especially is this true of Sabbath-school books. Here, while there must be something to interest, some
thing to attract, an author is obliged, by the very nature of his work, to confine himself within the limits of simple facts.
We deprecate most truly the great increase of works of fiction in our Sunday-school libraries. The Sunday school is a great instrumentality to save souls. This is its primal work: failing of this, it falls short of its real design, as indicated by the hand of Providence, and discovered in its past history. All, therefore, that appertains to the school should tend to this object, and aid in securing this result. But will the many works of fiction--mere fictionwhich are found upon the shelves of our Sunday-school libraries tend to the conversion of souls? We fear not.
In the following pages the author has endeavored to meet the real necessities of the
case, as far as he has been able to understand it. He has endeavored to lead the young mind to see and acknowledge the truth; while, at the same time, the reader has been gratifying his desire to be pleased. How well he has succeeded others must judge; he has prayed for Divine guidance.
The work is composed substantially of facts. The plan pursued in its preparation was as follows. The author first arranged his topics. Then he examined the various juvenile publications which were at his command, such as the Sunday School Advocate and the Well Spring, for incidents illustrative of these topics. He also drew largely upon the experience of his friends, and upon his own observation. These various incidents and anecdotes he has used, to the best of his ability, in illustrating and en
forcing his subjects. When, however, nothing could be found which was deemed apposite, simple incidents have been supposed, and used as illustrations.
Praying for God's blessing on his labors, and earnestly hoping that the future may reveal some good as resulting from the perusal of these pages, he tremblingly commits his little book to the hands of the thousands of Sabbath-school scholars who are earnestly desiring the means of moral and spiritual culture.