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03-13   Print  E-mail
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Young Enoch Brooks inscribed his name in this 

 children's Bible on March 13, 1789, in Princeton, New Jersey. Now a rare artifact of Americana, Brooks' book is one of four extant copies of A Curious Hieroglyphick Bible. With nearly five hundred woodcuts by American artists, this Bible was the most ambitious woodcut volume produced in America up to that time. A Curious Hieroglyphick Bible is one of sixty-five children's book titles printed by Isaiah Thomas (1749-1831). A preeminent early American printer and pioneer publisher of children's literature, Thomas began his apprenticeship as a young boy. By age seventeen, he was considered an excellent printer in his own right. Over the course of a long career, Thomas published numerous popular titles for children and adults. Also a bookseller, at one point he owned more than twenty bookstores in the Boston area.

One of Thomas' most significant ventures was the Massachusetts Spy, a newspaper he founded with a partner in 1770. By publishing eyewitness accounts of the battles of Lexington and Concord, Thomas fortified popular resistance to British authority in the early stages of the Revolutionary War. Widely read and exceedingly anti-British, his paper so angered Tory authorities that, in 1775, Thomas smuggled his press out of Boston. He fled to Worcester, Massachusetts where he remained for the next fifty-six years.


 

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