Written by: Andrew Lundeen

Primary Source: The Special Collections Provenance Project at MSU, October 29, 2015


A nightmare before Christmas? Our copy of Elsie’s Hallowe’en Experience, an 1888 collection of children’s stories from author Mary Dow Brine, was apparently given as an Xmas gift in 1908.

It’s not as strange as it sounds—the work does contain a couple of Christmas stories in addition to the titular tale of a spooky Halloween sleepover. Still, with Halloween just around the corner, it seemed an appropriate time to share this curious little volume.

Note the archaic spelling of Hallowe’en in the book’s title, with the apostrophe betraying the origin of the word as a contraction of All Hallows’ Even[ing]. This spelling largely fell out of favor after the 19th century.


The following two tabs change content below.
Andrew Lundeen
Andrew Lundeen, a Special Collections Librarian at MSU, is a recent master’s graduate in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (‘14). Since September 2013, Andrew has spearheaded the MSU Provenance Project, an effort to document marks of ownership and marks of use in rare books at MSU.
Andrew Lundeen

Latest posts by Andrew Lundeen (see all)