I love old antiques and vintage things. One of the reasons I love them is because someone else loved them, too. Someone else whom I may never know. Someone else who led a completely different life, totally separate from mine, and with one object our worlds are suddenly thrust together, tied to one another. I may never know anything about their life... but it was there, they lived it, and I'm living mine. It just so happens that something from their life, their world, popped its head into mine and gave me the chance to love it, cherish it, and give it new life.
Books are especially wonderful ... because sometimes there are even more mementos from the many different owners' lives that can be found. Sometimes it's a scribble, a name, even a date. A note in the front, or something written on the pages inside.
There are many things a person can do with old books ... right now, I have a stack of them right on my fireplace mantle, next to the bean balls I made, and below the beautiful clock that my father made my husband and me for our wedding.
Check out this one - it's called "Useful Information For Business Men; Mechanics and Engineers." Its copyright is from 1942, and at the time it cost only $1. I love the information its owner put in the front pages - Nick Mamula, started with Jones and Laughlin Steel in 1936 and was eligible to receive a pension in 1978.
The back page has written "Christian 639,000,000 .34.8 Non-Christian 1,189,000,000 .65.2" I have no idea what that means, but I like that it's there.
Then there's my favorite... this tiny hymnal, it stands maybe 5 inches tall. It's dated 1875. This is probably the oldest thing I own. The covers aren't attached anymore, but I don't love it any less. It was made for the Protestant Episcopal Church, and is full of 532 hymns. I can't help but wonder how many people held this precious tiny hymn book in their hands, singing praises to our Almighty God.
Sometimes, though I feel horrible doing it, I'll take pages out of a book and frame them for the wall. We found this book full of pictures of old cars at a close-out sale at a local bookstore. It wasn't really much of a book, it was newer, not too old, but we liked the pictures of the cars inside... so we decided to cut them up and frame them on the wall above our computer desk.
I wonder how many other people feel the same way I do about antiques or vintage finds, whether books or other. I'd love to hear from you - do you collect anything special? Do you feel nostalgic every time you look at your antique dishes?