THE MCGUFFEY READERS - 1836 version
In 1833, a small publishing company called Truman and Smith based in Cincinnati, Ohio, became interested in the idea of school texts. Truman and Smith began scouting for an eminent educator who could create a series of readers They happened upon Rev. William Holmes McGuffey.
This series of schoolbooks teaching reading and moral precepts, originally prepared by William Holmes McGuffey in 1836, had a profound influence on public education in the United States.
McGuffey was a professor at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and a Presbyterian minister. A Cincinnati publishing firm asked him to compile a series of graded readers adapted to the values, beliefs, and way of life of "Western people."
The desire for distinct grade levels, a changing society which sought less moral and spiritual content in their schoolbooks, and publishers who realized that there was greater profit in consumable workbooks, helped to bring about their decline. McGuffey's lively texts never entirely disappeared, however, and are once again enticing children to learn and become avid readers. Schools use them frequently today to strengthen reading skills and cultivate a sense of history in young students.
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