What a charming keepsake from a more genteel time, designed and illustrated by Clara Powers Wilson! This 111-page, 10 3/4" x 8 1/2" journal was published by the Reilly & Britton Co. in Chicago. The preliminary pages, which are devoted to the infant's birth statistics, branch off in order to record the baby's progress, with blank pages for "Gifts, Letters, Telegrams for the Baby" to "Visitors' Names" to christening data to pages for photos to "Baby's Favorite Lullaby," all the way on to pages for Christmas, Kindergarten, etc. The illustrations are utterly charming Turn-of-the-Century type depictions. I'm particularly partial to the inside cover art in front and back , which depict, appropriately, storks. While 1910 precedes the Art Deco period by several years, these bird renderings definitely foreshadow the era to come.
We wanted to show as much of the art in this tome as possible, so please be advised the only markings, not shown in this listing, are on the third page, titled, "This book presented to," after which writing in ink pin notes "Wm. B. Sill 3rd." Beneath the baby's name is "By," this being signed by "George & Alice Oxley," who had evidently presented the gift to the proud parents of little Billy Sill. This is the only writing in the journal.
After over a century, this is wear to the corners of the cover and some age-appropriate dark spots, which can be seen, perhaps at their worst, in our third photo, showing the flying storks. Additionally, the page titled "Photographs of Baby at Various Ages" seems to have had a photo or two, which were later removed, affixed to it in the past. This is, however, the only page that looks as if anything was ever pasted upon it. Additionally, there is a little dark spot beneath the title on the book's cover.
These considerations aside, this lovely slice of memorabilia remains very well-bound and is still intact--and in surprisingly good vintage condition in general many, many moons later.