Spread of Literacy
William Holmes McGuffey
A tribute to William Holmes McGuffey, who devised the famous reading texts bearing his name, the McGuffey Readers. The site features an informative article on the readers, which where first published in the 1830s and influenced American education well into the 20th century.
McGuffey's First Reader
A facsimile of the text that taught untold numbers of American children to read throughout the 19th century. This particular copy, from the collection of Harvard University, was published in 1885, but it is essentially the same text published 50 years earlier. It begins with the alphabet and proceeds to teach the rudiments of reading.
The Eclectic Fourth Reader by McGuffey
A facsimile of the McGuffey Fourth Reader, scanned from the collection of the New York Public Library. The title page dates it to 1838. The book contains a variety of stories students would read to develop "literacy and intellectual excellence."