A few weeks ago, I sat in the reading room at The Huntington Library combing through old books on artillery. I’d been through Hunt’s tome on an earlier visit and had started perusing an 1850 manual of similar content, when I made a surprising discovery.
Somebody, a long time ago, used a few of the artillery sketch diagrams for coloring pages! Take a look…
Of course, we don’t know who boldly defaced this volume or even when. The artist did not bother to date or sign the original work. Could it have been a bored student at a military academy? Could it have been the child of an artillery officer? The scenarios and possibilities are endless, though the proof of the deed is tangible.
The morals of these musings:
- Thou never knowst what thou shalt find in historic volumes
- Color not in thy books, lest future historians wonder exceedingly at circumstances which drove thee to deface a book
- If thou must color or write in thy books, do it neatly and make it an amateur work of art to brighten someone’s day with a mixed combination of horror and delight!
P.S. If someone would like to produce a real coloring book from some of the illustrations in these artillery manuals, I really want a copy for Christmas!