Unique early Georgia book

It’s always interesting to discover that you’re holding the only known surviving copy of a particular book and I came across one of these the other day. It was a book of Christian morals and theology for children called “Simple rhymes and familiar conversations, for children. By Uncle Charles.” It was published in Penfield, Georgia by Benjamin Brantly in 1844. “Uncle Charles” is supposedly a Baptist clergyman called Charles D. Mallary. Of interest is the fact that the work was published in what is now the village of Penfield, Georgia. Though small today Penfield in the nineteenth century was a thriving town with the campus of Mercer University and a productive cotton industry. The town went into decline after the Civil War with Mercer moving to Macon in 1871 and the cotton industry being ruined by the boll weevil.

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