Children's Literature

The Children's Literature collection at the American Antiquarian Society is, within its scope, the world's finest. Extending from the sober prose of Thomas Shepard's children's catechism, Short Catechism Familiarly Teaching the Knowledg of God (1654), to the cheerful images of children at play in Young America's ABC and Pretty Picture Book (1900), the collection, now numbering over 26,000 volumes, chronicles the emergence of an American literature for children.



For questions, please contact our Readers' services department or the Curator of Children's Literature, Laura Wasowicz, or (508) 471-2146. For information on obtaining digital images please review the step-by-step guide.


McLoughlin Bros. One of the major repositories of McLoughlin Bros. materials, including over 1,700 picture books, games, paper toys, publishers' catalogs, and original art work.

New Acquisitions

Brief videos introduce new collections in the New at AAS series

How to Find

General Catalog
Almost all children's literature titles have a record in the General Catalog (major exceptions include amateur newspapers and some foreign newspapers).

19th Century American Children's Book Trade Directory
This comprehensive directory contains 2,600 entries documenting the activity of individuals and firms involved in the manufacture and distribution of childrens books in the United States chiefly between 1821 and 1876.


Digital Access

Freely available
McLoughlin Bros. Catalogs, Price Lists, and Order Forms

By subscription (must be at AAS or an institution that has purchased the digital product):

Children's Literature and Culture over 8,000 tiles

America's Historical Imprints contains over 7,000 titles

Nineteenth Century Collection Online: Children's Literature and Childhood includes over 700 titles


McLoughlin Bros. - Hosmer Archival Drawings and Prints

McLoughlin Bros. Collection - 1997 Addition

Quick Links

Catalog | Login | Digital A-Z


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