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Queer Stories for Boys and Girls by Eggleston

Queer Stories

For Boys and Girls

BY

EDWARD EGGLESTON

AUTHOR OF "THE HOOSIER SCHOOLMASTER," "THE HOOSIER SCHOOL-BOY," ETC.

NEW YORK CHARLES SCRIBNER'S SONS 1884

Copyright, 1884, by

EDWARD EGGLESTON

TROW'S PRINTING AND BOOKBINDING COMPANY, NEW YORK.

PREFACE.

The stories here reprinted include nearly all of those which I have written for children in a vein that entitles them to rank as "Queer Stories," that is, stories not entirely realistic in their setting but appealing to the fancy, which is so marked a trait of the minds of boys and girls. "Bobby and the Key-hole" appeared eight or nine years ago in _St. Nicholas_, and has never before been printed in book form. The others were written earlier for juvenile periodicals of wide repute in their time--periodicals that have now gone the way of almost all young people's magazines, to the land of forgetfulness. Although I recall with pleasure the fact that these little tales enjoyed a considerable popularity when they first appeared, I might just as well as not have called them "The Unlucky Stories." In two or three forms some of the stories that form this collection have appeared in book covers in years past, but always to meet with disaster that was no fault of theirs. Two little books that contained a part of the stories herein reprinted were burned up--plates, cuts and all--in the Chicago fire of 1871. Another book, with some of these stories in it, was issued by a publisher in Boston, who almost immediately failed, leaving the plates in pawn. These fell into the hands of a man who issued a surreptitious edition, and then into the possession of another, to whom at length I was forced to pay a round sum for the plates, in order to extricate my unfortunate tales from the hands of freebooters. This is therefore the first fair and square issue in book form that these stories have had. For this they have been revised by the author, and printed from plates wholly new by the liberality of the present publisher.

E. E.

Owls' Nest, Lake George, 1884.

CONTENTS.

QUEER STORIES. PAGE

Bobby and the Key-hole, a Hoosier Fairy Tale, 3

Mr. Blake's Walking-stick, 23

The Chairs in Council, 60

What the Tea-kettle Said, 67

Crooked Jack, 72

The Funny Little Old Woman, 77

Widow Wiggins' Wonderful Cat, 83


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