Collectibles of the Week–Memories of School Days


I  have so many wonderful collectibles acquired over the last 80+ years.  Some were gifts, some were part of my life growing up, some are inherited, some were purchased at antique malls and thrift stores  – all are precious to me.  Some items are kept up year-around while others are brought out seasonally and on holidays.  Unfortunately, many priceless-to-me objects go undisplayed and unseen for years.  Each wek, I’m going to pull out an item and post COLLECTIBLE OF THE WEEK.

The day after Labor Day will always mean the first day of school to me, even though my grandchildren and great-grandchildren have been in school since the third week of August.  It just seems appropriate for school to begin again in September.  I brought out my antique granite ware alphabet plate (pictured above), made in Austria.  My daughter painted the old-fashioned school scene.

Birthday gifts one year were this 1930s era pencil box with the Scotties along with a little case that has a 1929 postage stamp affixed.


Inside the box are all the items needed to start out a successful school year, including a holder for a pen nib.  We used these pen holders and dipped the pens in an ink hole on our desks for penmanship lessons and adding new spelling words to a thin pad of paper that was covered in oilcloth.


I’m lucky to have my father’s two arithmetic books which he would have been using in about 1918-19.…


…and four of my mother’s books with notations from her eighth grade class in 1929-30.


I loved school from the first day to the last day of the last year and enjoy seeing these old keepsakes.

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Lillian Applegate Westfelt was a mother of 4, grandmother of 6, and great-grandmother of 3. She was an 86-year-old widow living in a nice little bungalow with her oldest daughter and a beagle-dachsund named Addie. She passed away in November, 2018.

5 thoughts on “Collectibles of the Week–Memories of School Days”

  1. How neat that you have your parents school books. I have one of my father’s English Books from Williamstown, Ky Schools. I love that book because he had scribbled saying and pictures of horses inside the covers.

  2. You are very lucky to have those things! My mother has her slate (hand held chalk board) that she used in school and it hangs in her living room. Luckily the graphics on it are very colorful. I can’t believe you have your parents school books – that’s amazing!

  3. I agree with you completely on the start of school. August is just wrong! =) I had desks with that hole to hold the ink bottle, but I never actually got to put an ink bottle in it. I still love real ink pens. They cost a fortune now! Great memorabilia and great memories, too.

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