JF Ptak Science Books Quick Post
I have a little pocket-sized book at home, a fine little arithmetic book by Roswell C. Smith, Practical and Mental Arithmetic on a New Plan in Which Mental Arithmetic is Combined with the Use of the Slate--it was published in Hartford, and this copy was printed in 1836, in its every energetic 53rd edition. Mr. Smith wrote himself one fine and popular arithmetic tract, and the book is absolutely loaded with all sorts of info that could see a person through most aspects of figuring-life for years to come. My copy is very very well worn, and although it is missing pieces of the paper cover and the surface of the books looks like the Somme, it is actually very smooth--worn and rubbed smooth from years of use.
And just about the only word left visible from these years of being handled by little hands is the fragment "ART" from "Arithmetic", which I thought was a lovely thing.
As a matter of fact there is plenty in this books that is perfectly fine and applicable at the rudimentary math stages--of course some of the units of measurement have long since fallen into obscurity (even by the late 19th century) the lessons remain useful, if a little stiff, especially when you're asked to work out some of the results on your slate.
But the issue remains that this tidily compacted work is a pretty thing to work with: