05-03-2005 05-03-2005
Skinner Auctions
Skinner Auctions Bolton MA
May 3, 2005 10:00 AMCalender

Rare and Important Unpublished Autograph Draft of the "Remarkable Story of Chicken Little,"

Auction: Clocks, Watches & Scientific Instruments - 2283 Location: Bolton Date / Time: May 03, 2005 10:00AM


Rare and Important Unpublished Autograph Draft of the "Remarkable Story of Chicken Little," by John Greene Chandler, (1815-1879), c. 1840, comprising thirteen pages on blue lined paper, with numerous holographic corrections and word count marginalia, 8vo, (lacking page 9, tape remnants to edges of first leaf, lower right corner of most leaves chewed affecting some text, overall smudging and handling wear). Sold together with a printer's proof of the 1840 edition and a group of ephemera related to the story.Note: The 1840 version of this classic tale was distilled from the voluminous story presented here. This version provides a far richer and fuller version that includes additional characters, the birth of Chicken Little and a plethora of side notes and thoughts on many of the classic characters, Hen Pen, Duck Luck, Goose Loose, Turk Lurk and Drake, who all fall prey to sly Fox Lox. This celebrated tale of youthful panic and how gullible others can be came from the fertile imagination of John Greene Chandler of Petersham, Massachusetts. His first work in 1838 was Grandmother's Toy Book and in 1840 he wrote The Remarkable Story of Chicken Little. The fanciful story was first printed and distributed at a fair held at Quincy Hall in Boston. The purpose of the fair was to raise additional funds to complete the Bunker Hill Monument, whose cornerstone had been laid some fifteen years earlier. As chance would have it, the small pamphlet was read by the editor of Godey's Lady's Book, Mrs. Sarah J. Hale, who reviewed it very positively in her newspaper, The Monument. This enthusiastic response propelled this 19th century fable to become an icon of children's literature and eventually made the name Chicken Little synonymous with paranoia and over-reaction.
Estimate $10,000-15,000


John Greene Chandler, Petersham, Massachusetts, Quincy Hall, Bunker Hill Monument, Sarah J. Hale, editor , Godey's Lady's Book, Godey, The Monument, paranoia