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Round the World with Nellie Bly


J. A. Grozier, Game of Round the World: a Novel and Fascinating Game with Plenty of Excitement by Land and Sea: with Nellie Bly (1864-1922), the World’s Globe Circler (New York: McLoughlin Brothers, 1890). Graphic Arts GAX 2011- in process



On November 14, 1889, investigative journalist Nellie Bly (whose real name was Elizabeth Jane Cochran), began a journey “around the world in eighty days.” Inspired by Jules Verne’s fictitious character Phileas Fogg and financed by the New York World, Bly was challenged to beat Fogg’s time and write about the journey for the newspaper. Over 1,000,000 people entered the newspaper’s contest to guess the time it would take Bly to finish.

On January 25, 1890, she made it back to New York City, beating Fogg in 72 days, 6 hours and 11 minutes. And, like Verne’s hero, her journey was celebrated in a board game.


Post-hurricane post: The Wet and Dry Question

This just happened to be on my desk when I returned after the hurricane.
During the 1910s and 1920s, the S.D. Warren Company produced a number of small brochures and instructional booklets to promote its papermill. Many were designed by Boston artist W.A. Dwiggins (1880-1956), although not the one illustrated here. It is interesting that although trying to be helpful, Warren was the first American paper company to use wood fibers in their products. From wikipedia: "S. D. Warren Paper Mill is a small mill built on the Presumpscot River in the 1730s. . . . In 1867, Warren decided to add wood fibers with rags fibers for paper, making it the first mill in the United States to do so . . . By 1880, the mill produced 35,000 pounds of paper per day. After S. D. Warren's death in 1888, the mill continued to grow through the 20th century, employing close to 3,000 Westbrook residents."
Read more on the paper industry by John Bidwell:

Inner Beauty


Our rare books conservator, Mick LeTourneaux, shared this with me. He was handed a book to repair: Enrique Udaonda, Diccionario Biográfico Argentine (Buenos Aires: Casa editora “Coni,” 1938). Firestone Non Circulating (Fnc) F2805 .U36.

And found this:


Tired of Bridge? Play Dickens

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Characters from Charles Dickens. A Game. [London, Jaques & Son, ca.1858.] 54 cards (94 × 65 mm).

One of many Victorian card games developed by the firm John Jaques & Son to capitalize on the popular novels of the period. We assume the date of these cards is around 1858, since there is no mention of A Tale of Two Cities (1859), Great Expectations (1861), or Our Mutual Friend (1865). According to the rules, any number can play up to eight. Each of the thirteen “quartettes” of characters equals a suit and when one player collects the whole suit, he gets the “trick.” The first player to get three “tricks” is the winner.

Early modern German advertising


Das Plakat: Mitteilungen des Vereins der Plakatfreunde [The Poster: Report from the Friends of the Poster] (Berlin: Verlag Max Schildberger, 1910-1921). Graphic Arts has 1913, 1915, 1920. (GAX) in process


In 1905, a German dentist named Hans Josef Sachs (1881-1974) founded the Verein der Plakat Freunde (The Society for the Friends of the Poster). By 1910, Sachs had his own magazine Das Plakat, dedicated not only to posters but all aspects of commercial German graphic art. The bimonthly magazine included letterheads, packaging labels, playing cards, cubist advertisements, and propaganda. Das Plakat’s logo and early covers were designed by Lucian Bernhard (1883-1972), who would later join Elmer Adler (1884-1962) at the Pynson Printers in New York City.


German Toy Soldiers


A recent article in the Princeton Alumni Weekly ( mentioned our collection of 48 Wehrmacht miniatures (German toy soldiers from World War II), ca. 1940s. Museum object collection Ex 5042. Gift of Caron Cadle, Class of 1979 and the Class of 1939 Foundation.

This collection comes with several letters describing the collecting efforts of Frederic Fox, Class of 1939 and the campaign of Caron Cadle to finish and bring a collection of these toy soldiers to Princeton.


Here is a brief exerpt: “I received the commission to assemble a collection of toy soldiers of the Third Reich in early June 1978, from Dr. Frederick Fox, Class of 1939, Keeper of Princetoniana. The class of ‘39 wished to present such a collection to Firestone Library as a repository of the culture and mentality of Hitler’s Germany. Dr. Fox had purchased a fine selection of these soldiers in Koblenz during a bicycle tour of Germany in 1939, but had given several to President Eisenhower’s grandson while he was working with the President. After examining Dr. Fox’s remaining soldiers, I was presented with one of them to use as a guide on my journeys. On June 15th, 1978, I departed for Europe, primarily to engage in research for my senior thesis … but equally intrigued by the challenge of finding toys of an era forty years past.” -Caron Cadle, ‘79


For more information, see:
Reggie Polaine, The War Toys = Kriegsspielzeuge. No.1, The Story of Hausser-Elastolin (London: New Cavendish Books, 1979). Cotsen Children’s Library (CTSN) NK8475.M5 S75
Was Sich die Hausser-Jugend wünscht! (Germany. Elastolin. 1935-. ; 1936). Cotsen Children’s Library (CTSN) Pamphlets — European 20 — Advertising — Box 1 32567

Casting Type

Graphic Arts is the fortunate new owner of a handheld type mould made by Stan Nelson. Rather than try to photograph the mould, here’s a youtube video of Mr. Nelson using one to cast type. This is one of four videos he made, each one better than the next.

In case you do not know of Mr. Nelson, here is a small section of his online biography:
Stan Nelson is Museum Specialist Emeritus in the Graphic Arts Collection, Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of American History. In three decades of employment he worked with the history of printing technology, mainly from the first four centuries of printing, and focused on typefounding, including punchcutting and casting type from hand moulds. He has given numerous lectures and conducted workshops and seminars on typefounding and printing. Since retiring, he has taught the History of Typography at the University of Virginia’s Rare Book School. His honors and awards include the Typophiles Award and the American Printing History Association’s 25th annual Laureate Award.

Did you get a Reward of Merit this year?



Princeton owns Awards of Merits from over thirty-five presses in the United States from the 1820s on. For information, see Patricia Fenn, Rewards of Merit: Tokens of a Child’s Progress and a Teacher’s Esteem as an Enduring Aspect of American Religious and Secular Education (Charlottesville, Va.: Ephemera Society of America, 1994). Graphic Arts Collection (GA) Oversize LA230 .F46 1994bq

La Casa del Libro


When the first curator of graphic arts, Elmer Adler (1884-1962), left Princeton University in 1955, he accepted an invitation from Teodoro Moscoso to visit Puerto Rico. Adler was enchanted and quickly moved to Old San Juan, where he opened La Casa del Libro. With the support of a group of local residents, they formed a non-profit organization Amigos de Calle del Cristo 255, Inc., to operate the La Casa as a museum and library dedicated to the art of the book.

Adler began La Casa with his personal collection of illuminated manuscripts, incunables, and contemporary fine press books. New acquisitions were also made, along with a series of public exhibitions, printmaking classes, and many other events. Together with his protégé David Jackson McWilliams, Adler lived and worked in Puerto Rico for the last seven years of his life.

La Casa del Libro remains at 255 Calle del Cristo today, under the direction of the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture, which owns La Casa’s two buildings. Unfortunately, the doors have been closed recently, awaiting repairs and renovations. For information, see

Play reviewed: The horse acted well

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Paul Pry, a comic drama written by the English playwright John Poole (1786-1872), premiered September 1825 at the Haymarket Theatre and ran 114 performances. Variations on the mischievous exploits of Pry continued until the early 1870s.

On May 21, 1826, the London Examiner announced: PAUL PRY ON HORSEBACK! ROYAL AMPHITHEATRE May 22d, and until further notice, the new local, characteristic, eccentric, panoramic, pedestrian, and equestrian speaking picture of life, manner, and peculiarity of the present day, called PAUL PRY on HORSEBACK … The Seventh appearance of the celebrated German Artist, Herr Cline, upon an Elastic Cord. Seventh time of Mr. Ducrow’s wonderful performance upon Three Horse at one time, in the character of the Chinese Enchanter. The Entertainment to commence with the forty-ninth representation of WAR in INDIA, or the Burmese.

A later review read in part: “…It was a very poor piece but there was some fun in Paul Pry’s jumping through the bar window of an inn on horseback. The horse acted well.”

The British caricaturist William Heath sometimes used Paul Pry as his pseudonym.

See also: Paul Pry: in which are all the peculiarities, irregularities, singularities, pertinacity, loquacity, and audacity of Paul Pry, as performed by Mr. Liston, at the Theatre Royal (London: T. Hughes …, [1826]). Engraving by George Cruikshank. Graphic Arts Collection Cruik 1826.7

John Poole (1786-1872), Paul Pry: a comedy, in three acts (London: John Duncombe, [1830]). Etching by Robert Cruikshank. Rare Books (Ex) 3593.999 v. 9

John Poole (1786-1872), Paul Pry: a comedy in three acts (New-York: E.B. Clayton, [ca. 1833]). Rare Books: Theatre Collection (ThX) TC023 (Playbooks Collection) Box 113

Resist the devil and he will fly far from you


Albert Alden (1812-1883), The Life and Age of Man: Stages of Man’s Life, from the Cradle to the Grave, wherein all Christians May Behold their Frail Nature, and the Miseries that Attend a Sinful Life, Set Forth in an Alphabetical Poem. Barre, Mass.: Printed by Thompson and Alden, [ca. 1835-1840]. Broadside with a large allegorical wood engraving attributed to Albert Alden. Paul M. Ingersoll, Class of 1950, Graphic Arts Acquisitions Fund. Graphic Arts Broadside Collection.


Picturing the different ages and/or stages of life has been a favorite subject of artists, from the Renaissance to the nineteenth century. The earliest broadsides were printed for a popular audience, to appeal to their fears about life and death; sin and salvation; and stimulate the belief in a moral life.

In 1540, the German painter Jörg Breu, the younger (ca. 1510-1547) published Ten Ages of Man, one of the first engravings showing the steps of life, with staircases leading both up and down, as man passes from the cradle to the grave. Abraham Bach repeated the motif in the seventeenth century, but added a woman on each step, with the more politically correct title, Ten Ages of Human Life.

Satirical print (The Ages of Man), 1630s. Published by Thomas Jenner (died 1673). Engraving. British Museum.

This seventeenth-century Ages of Man engraving closely resembles the nineteenth-century broadside held in Princeton’s graphic arts collection. It presents a man’s life in eleven steps, with three muses in the central arch below. Albert Alden’s broadside depicts life in eleven stages, but offers the more typical devil at the bottom center, tempting two men. One accepts and one rejects these temptations. In both prints, a clock is ticking, moving us ever closer to midnight.

The Pennsylvania printmaker Gustav S. Peters designed another version, with only slight variations, as did James Baillie, Nathaniel Currier, and the Kellogg Brothers. Dozens of other versions were published, purchased, and hung on bedroom walls throughout the nineteenth century.

James Baillie, The Life and Age of Man, Stages of Man’s Life, from the Cradle to the Grave, ca. 1848. Library of Congress.

For more information, see Thomas R. Cole, The Journey of Life: a Cultural History of Aging in America (Cambridge [England]; New York: Cambridge University Press, 1992). Firestone Library (F) HQ1064.U5 C526 1992
Alan Wallach, “Voyage of Life as popular art,” Art Bulletin 59, no. 2 (June 1977)

More than 100,000 copies sold in the first few days

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George Cruikshank (1792-1878), The Bottle, 1847. Two issues of the imperial folio edition; eight glyphographs with tint (right) and with hand coloring (left). Both gifts of Richard Waln Meirs, Class of 1888. Graphic Arts GA Oversize Cruik 1847.6eq

In 1847, inspired by William Hogarth’s Rake’s Progress, George Cruikshank published a graphic narrative in eight plates showing one man’s descent into sin, poverty, and insanity, due to alcoholism. More than 100,000 copies of The Bottle were sold in the first few days. The book was exported to America and Australia, dramatized at eight London theaters simultaneously, and performed as a magic lantern show.

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George’s father, Isaac Cruikshank (1756-1811), was also a successful caricaturist until he died in a drinking contest. George was himself a heavy drinker until 1847, when he signed a vow of total abstinence. The Bottle was first published while he was still drinking.

The title page for an 1881 edition carries the following message: “Mr. George Cruikshank thinks it right to state that the first edition of this Bottle (the title of which ought to have been THE BLACK BOTTLE) was first published in 1847, double the size of this edition, and sold at One Shilling. And he wishes it to be further understood that these smaller plates are taken from the original Etchings, which he has in his own possession.”

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Broadsides from George Cruikshank’s scrapbook for The Bottle 1847-1848. Rare Books: Manuscripts Collection (MSS) C0256 (Series 10, volume no. 46)

“And Mr. George Cruikshank’s [objective] in producing this work of the Bottle was to assist, if possible, in putting a stop to the poverty, misery, wretchedness, insanity, and crime which are caused by strong drink. And this Bottle was published before G.C. became a Teetotaler; but upon mature reflection he came to the conclusion that nothing would ever stop these dreadful evils but Universal Total Abstinence from all intoxicating liquors; and thus having come to the belief that it was of no use preaching without setting an example, George Cruikshank in the same year, 1847, became a Total Abstainer.”

Cruikshank reproduced his drawings by glyphography, a quicker, cheaper way of making printing plates than carving wood blocks or etching plates with acid. Patented in 1842, the glyphographic plate was made by covering copper with a thick wax resist and drawing through the wax to expose parts of the metal. The plate was then electroplated creating a metal relief line, similar to the etched metal relief plates of William Blake but much less detailed or elegant. The relief plate can then be letterpress printed along with a caption or other text.

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Above: Tom Taylor (1817-1880), The Bottle. As first performed at the City of London Theatre, in 1847 (New York: DeWitt Publishing House, [1847?]). Theatre Collection (ThX) TC023 (Playbooks Collection) Box 155. Below:The London Journal and Weekly Record of Literature, Science, and Art, November 20, 1847

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The Freedman's Bureau


The Freedman’s Bureau! An Agency to Keep the Negro in Idleness at the Expense of the White Man. Twice Vetoed by the President, and Made a Law by Congress. Support Congress & You Support the Negro. Sustain the President & You Protect the White Man, 1866. Woodcut. Graphic Arts Broadsides Collection

Following the Civil War, the American Freedmen’s Inquiry Commission was established to suggest how to help newly emancipated slaves. Out of their report was born the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, also known as the Freedman’s Bureau. Under the leadership of Major General Oliver Howard (1830-1909), the agency issued food and clothing, operated hospitals and temporary camps, helped locate family members, and promoted education.

In December 1865, the radical republicans in Congress attempted to strengthen the agency with the Freedman’s Bureau Act, but President Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) vetoed it. This racist poster was one of many graphics used to attack the congressional republicans and other groups working for Black suffrage. Specifically, it promotes the election of Hiester Clymer (1827-1884), who was running for Governor of Pennsylvania on a white-supremacy platform.

Note in the back right, the U.S. Capitol has columns labeled, Candy, Rum, Gin, Whiskey, Sugar Plums, Indolence, White Women, Apathy, White Sugar, Idleness, Fish Balls, Clams, Stews, and Pies.

When I die, how can the cool grave hurt me?

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Geburts und Taufschein (Birth and Baptism Certificate for Tobias Grier) Allentown, Pennsylvania: H. Ebner und Comp., printed ca. 1824; written 1825. Broadside with hand coloring. Graphic Arts Broadside Collection.

From 1821 to 1829, Heinrich Ebner ran a printing firm in Allentown, Pennsylvania, which produced birth and baptismal certificates. This one matches two others found in the Free Library of Philadelphia’s Rare Book collection, with slightly different hand coloring.

Here is a rough translation of the central panel: To these two married people, namely Mister Sebastian Grier and his lawful wife Elisabeth Leister, was born a son into the world, the 2nd day of January in the year of our Lord, 1825. This son was born in Hilltown Township, Bucks County in [the] State [of] Pennsylvania in North America, and was baptized and received the name Tobias Grier on the 17th day of April in the year of our Lord 1825 from Mr. Pastor Rätter. The sponsors were Mister John Leister and his wife Maria.

Upper left: Scarcely born into the world, it is only a short measured pace from the first step to the cool grave in the earth. O with every moment! Our strength diminishes, and with every year we grow riper for the bier.

Upper right: And who knows in what hour the final voice will awaken us, because God has not revealed this to anybody yet. Who tends to his house will depart from the world with joy. Because surety, in contrast, can provoke eternal death.

Lower left: I am baptized, I stand united with my God through my baptism. I therefore always speak joyfully in hardship, sadness, fear and need. I am baptized, that’s a joy for me. The joy lasts eternally.

Lower right: I am baptized, and when I die, how can the cool grave hurt me? I know my fatherland and legacy that I will have with God in Heaven. After death, Heaven’s garment of joy and celebration is prepared for me.

Lower center: I am baptized in your name, God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost. I am counted as one of your seeds, to a people that you blessed. O! What fortune for me! Lord, let me be worthy of it!

For more information, see also: Klaus Stopp, The Printed Birth and Baptismal Certificates of the German Americans (East Berlin, Pa.: Russell D. Earnest Associates, 1997).

To see other examples:

Le prix de sagesse (The Price of Wisdom)

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Le prix de sagesse ou La Fontaine en jeu (The Price of Wisdom or A Game of La Fontaine), 1810. Etching. Paris: Chez Demonville Imprimeur Libraire. Graphic Arts French prints

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This is an early nineteenth-century version of the Game of the Goose, which is claimed to have been a gift from Francesco I de’ Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany (1541-1613) to King Philip II of Spain (1527-1598) sometime between 1574 and 1587. According to H. J. R. Murray, A History of Board-Games Other than Chess (Firestone GV1312 .M8 1952), the Game of the Goose reached England by 1597, when John Wolfe entered “the newe and most pleasant game of the Goose” in the Stationers’ Register.

No matter what the theme, the board consists of sixty-three numbered spaces arranged in a spiral. In La prix de sagesse each of the numbered compartments depicts a fable from Jean de La Fontaine (1621-1695), arranged around a center square. Rules are also given in English, along with brief summaries of the fables in verse to left and to right.

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The French poet La Fontaine published 243 fables in twelve books from 1668 to 1694. He took his inspiration from Aesop, Horace, and ancient Indian literature such as the Panchatantra. The first collection of Fables Choisies (Ex 3262.33.173) appeared March 31, 1668, dedicated to “Monseigneur” Louis de France (1661-1711) the six-year-old son and heir of Louis XIV, King of France and Maria Theresa of Spain.

Rare Books and Special Collections holds more than 150 editions of La Fontaine’s Fables. The Cotsen collection holds over two dozen different versions of the Game of the Goose, included a variant edition of the La Fontaine: Jeu instructif des Fables de la Fontaine (Paris: Basset [between 1835 and 1845]). (CTSN) Print Case LA / Box 99 103446

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For English translations of the fables, see

The Texas Ranger, the Play that Pleases

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The Texas Ranger [broadside] (Milwaukee: Greve Show Print Co., no date [ca. 1895]). Western Americana collection.

This broadside advertises “one of the best and most realistic Western dramas ever written,” entitled The Texas Ranger. One side of the poster points out that this is “not an untried play, but one which has had long runs in New York, Boston, Philadelphia and Chicago —now being presented with the same strong cast.” According to the promotion, it is “a story of today!”

It certifies that this play has been “endorsed and commended by the most conservative critics in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Buffalo and Providence who unite in pronouncing Texas Ranger one of the best and most realistic Western dramas ever written.”

At the end of the nineteenth century, The Greve Show Printing Company was a theatrical printing business, specializing in commercial posters and moving picture window displays. In 1901, the local Wisconsin business was purchased by Rudolph Pfeil, Jr. (1860-1911), who renamed it the American Show Print Company of Milwaukee. This firm covered the entire United States with their business along with an extensive patronage in Canada, England, and Australia. At its height, the company employed about seventy people, including a dedicated team of artists and master printers.

Little Topsy's Song


In the October 21, 1852, issue of Eliza Cook’s Journal, there is an extended article about Harriet Beecher Stowe’s new book Uncle Tom’s Cabin. “Wherever you go,” Cook wrote, “there is Uncle Tom’s Cabin for sale. … Mrs. Harriet Beecher Stowe, an American lady … has now become a household word. It is nearly as superfluous also to say anything about the story with which the people are so familiar…”

“It is said that the characters are exaggerated. … But it must be remembered that Mrs. Stowe, throughout her work, asserts that the Black race are peculiarly distinguished by active and tender emotions,

which render them more than ordinarily faithful and affectionate,—by great patience, which makes them long-suffering,— and by a sense of, and love for, the ludicrous, which keeps them light-hearted in the midst of suffering. We confess that we are disposed to agree with Mrs. Stowe in these opinions.”

The following year, sheet music for “Little Topsy’s Song” was published with words by Eliza Cook (1818-1896) and music by Asa B. Hutichinson (1823-1884). This edition of the broadside was issued in New York City around 1860.

Eliza Cook (1818-1896) , Little Topsy’s Song ([New York]: H. De Marsan, ca. 1860). Graphic Arts GA 2011- in process

Coming: Uncle Tom's Cabin

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Coming: Uncle Tom’s Cabin [Broadside] ([United States]: Ora Martin, Inc., [ca. 1925]). Graphic Arts GA 2011- in process

On June 20, 1900, both the New York Times and the Chicago Tribune reported on a panic that occurred during a performance of Uncle Tom’s Cabin in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey. A tent had been erected to hold an audience of 400 people but the play was so popular that an additional 200 people crowded into the temporary wooden seats.

Just as Little Eva was ready to do her big scene, a section of seating collapsed and forty people fell to the ground. Men pulled out their knives and cut holes in the tent to escape the panicking crowd. Dozens of women fainted and had to be carried out.

The actors attempted to continue the performance but the Captain of Police refused to allow it. Once quiet was restored, members of the audience were offered a refund but most preferred to receive tickets for the next evening’s performance.

That was a travelling company under the management of Orcott and Roberts. Uncle Tom’s Cabin continued to tour well into the 1920s, when this poster announced yet another performance under the management of Ora Martin, Inc.

John Whiting's Brushes


John L. Whiting & Son, Sole Manufacturers of Whiting’s Celebrated Brushes [recto and verso] (Boston: Whiting & Son, printed by Donaldson Brothers, Five Points; no date [ca. 1880]). Graphic Arts ephemera collection, 2011- in process.
*Note, this piece contains offensive language.

Before the contemporary business card, small trade cards were printed to advertise merchandise and services of various businesses. These might be elaborately designed and printed, often with humorous pictures. Towards the end of the nineteenth century, multicolor lithographic printing allowed for beautiful images on these relatively small, ephemeral cards.

Whiting & Son, a Boston firm, went to the Donaldson Brothers printing company in lower east side of Manhattan for their cards because Donaldson specialized in this type of commercial lithography. Note the African American barber. The Whiting brushes are marketed to both black and white owned businesses. Other examples of Donaldson’s cards have been posted earlier on this blog.

For a complete history of John Whiting’s firm, see or if this link does not work on your computer, just google John L. Whiting brushes and it will come up.

Around the World or Around the Board


Le tour du monde en 80 jours d’après le roman de Jules Verne (Around the World in 80 Days after the novel by Jules Verne) (Paris: [Société Française de Jeux et Jouets, ca. 1915]). Chromolithographed board in the original box. Graphic Arts GAX 2011- in process



If your New Year’s resolution is to follow Phileas Fogg’s attempt to circumnavigate the globe but you don’t have eighty days to spare, you could always play this board game. You begin with Fogg and his French assistant, Jean Passepartout, leaving London at 8:45 p.m. on October 2, 1872. Eighty spaces later, you return on December 21, 1872 to win the bet and 20,000 pounds.

Along the way, you will have to bribe the ship’s engineer to reach Bombay ahead of schedule. You will lose two days helping Aouda, the young Indian woman who was drugged with opium, but she will make an interesting traveling companion later on. You will be reunited with Passepartout in Yokohama, who has been working at a circus to raise the money for your passage home.


The box has no publisher or date but we assume “J.J.” stands for the toy publisher Société Française de Jeux et Jouets and other collectors have dated this chromolithographed edition around 1915. An earlier version had a lithographed board with hand coloring.

To see the actual book in its first English edition:
Jules Verne (1826-1905), The Tour of the World in Eighty Days (Boston: J.R. Osgood and company, 1873). William H. Scheide Library 13.2.21

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