Although I commented on The Magic of Books , I wish to answer the questions more fully here and borrow(steal) her great idea of posting about old books. Before (or after) reading this post, you should hop over to PJ's place and look at her sentimental favorites.
The oldest book in our home is a small New Testament with a brass clasp. This book has a 1860 date on the title page and reputedly belonged to my grandfather, John Milton Gray, who was born in 1855 and saw Abraham Lincoln's funeral train in Illinois. There is indistinguishable writing on two of the cover pages, which might be my grandfather's signature. The little book was among my Grandma Gray's belongings.
In the Daddy D/MJD household, we are fortunate to have a Gray family Bible and a family Bible from Daddy D's family. Both Bibles have a partial genealogical listing. However, there is a mystery. His family's Bible has the name Farleman on the cover. As far as I know, there are no Farlemans in his family, and that name is not mentioned inside the Bible.
Another religious book in my collection is a Methodist Hymnal that was a gift to my Grandmother Gray from my parents for Christmas of 1944. Grandma Gray was married to John Milton Gray, who was a Methodist minister and a newspaper publisher. You may know that Methodist hymnals contain liturgy as well as religious songs .
This unusual book in my small collection of old books is 1001 One Minute Stories by H.S. Chapman. The small book published in 1927 has two interesting features. There is this decorative vine design inside both book covers, and the book was published by the Perry Mason Company. Unfortunately, I am not sure if this book belonged to my Dad or to one of my grandfathers.
I have read two of the books featured in this post. I read The Little World of Don Camillo so many years ago. The story is humorous tale about a parish priest and his adversary, Peppone, a Communist mayor of an Italian village. The story is enhanced with clever line drawings sprinkled throughout the book of an angel and a devil. This particular book belonged to my parents. My father used to put this label in each of their books. Notice that he has neatly printed our last name and pasted this label inside the book. My father also created his own book label, which I had hoped to display here but could sadly find no examples. However, I can see the label vividly in my mind. Dad had made a Wedgewood blue wood-cut print of an ice-skater with a stocking cap and his initials BWT.
The other book that I actually have read is Melting of Molly by Maria Thompson Daviess. I bought this book 30 some years ago at an antique store here in northwest Indiana. This is my first book in a small collection of Molly books. The story is a delightful romantic tale about an slightly overweight widow.
This classic Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman was a gift from my father, Byron, to my mother, Laura, for Christmas in 1942. The corner bookmark on the poem, "Children of Adam", must be significant. My mother was quite a literary person and loved poems.
This trio of books was Christmas gift to Daddy D from his mother, Cleo, and father, Mike, in 1955. These three titles must have been popular for children of the 50's especially boys.
Do not forget to take a look at The Magic of Books not only for the post about, "What's your oldest book?" but to check out PJ's frequent children's book reviews. She is very knowledgeable and writes passionately about children's books. You will be glad that you did.