The Civil War was an especially precarious time for the young. Fathers were off fighting, nearly emptying entire communities in New England of males between the ages of 15 and 50. Mothers of necessity, at least those that did not become nurses, remained in the communities, taking on dual roles in the home, business, and industry. This often left the young in roving bands, all but raising each other.
Especially for those in traditions with a strong view of the family as ekklesia, this wrought a certain amount of angst about the moral and religious status of the young, in this case young boys. The situation was rendered all the more significant as the numbers of casualties mounted. Our young protagonist in the present volume has lost his father only months before the story begins.
A fascinating work written toward the end of the war. No other copies on the market.
This example gifted by Professor C. C. Robinson to Ralph M. Ground. Robinson was an important educator in Ohio who went on to become the head of the School of Music at Ohio University and the Mayor of Woodville, Ohio. Ground, the book's recipient, went on to become a pastor himself.
Zell [Mrs. H. O'Brien]. Social Influence, Or, Take Care of the Boys. Philadelphia. Presbyterian Publication Society. 1864. 396pp.
Good + in attractive green cloth. A bit rubbed at extremities, lightly tender between signatures with rear mull exposed rendering rear interior hinge a bit tender. Textually very crisp and clean.