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Copy book

Copy book

  • Place of origin:

    England (printed)
    Derby (hand written)

  • Date:

    1813 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Hood, Henry, born 1836 - died 1917 (author)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Ink on paper

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Barbara Jones

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Bound book without cover, comprised of eleven printed sheets.
The front features doodles and signature of Henry Hood. The remainder of the book is a series of sentences starting with different letters in alphabetical order; there are two on each page. The first page has been lost, as the first letter is 'C'. About halfway through, there is a drawing of a bird on the reverse of a page. The back cover is densely covered with single letters, ink blots and the name 'Francis'.

Place of Origin

England (printed)
Derby (hand written)


1813 (made)


Hood, Henry, born 1836 - died 1917 (author)

Materials and Techniques

Ink on paper

Marks and inscriptions

‘Conquer bad habits’
‘Disdain mean acts’
‘Emulate the virtuous’
‘Foment not quarrels’
‘Gain pure wisdom’
‘Honour virtuous men’
‘Improve in virtue’
‘Keep your promises’
‘Lament past follies’
‘Make improvement’
‘Never commit crimes’
‘Obey your masters’
‘Perform your duty’
‘Quit vicious persons’
‘Ruin awaits sinners’
‘Search the scriptures’
‘Truth bears scrutiny’
‘Value your character’
‘You may improve’
‘Zenophon was wise’


Width: 22 cm, Height: 8 cm

Object history note

This collection of books belonged to Derby tailor Francis Hood and his children.

Francis was born in Ashbourne, Derby, in 1800. In 1823 he married Susanna Wilson, and they had five children. All their names, apart from the youngest, Susanna, appear on the exercise and copy books. Francis was a successful tailor, and the enterprise grew to be a flourishing family business.

George (born 1827) was a tailor with his father by the age of 14. He died aged only 24.

Elizabeth (born 1830) became a milliner and dressmaker. She married Scottish draper John Train, but was soon widowed, and thereafter is listed is woollen goods trader as well as dressmaker.

Francis (born 1832) moved to Australia, possibly before his twentieth birthday, where he stayed the rest of his life.

Henry (born 1836) was an apprentice in 1851. Ten years later, at the age of 25, he inherited the family business, and by 1881 was employing 6 men and 2 boys. He was married to Elizabeth from Somerset, and they had six children. He was able to retire in his mid-sixties and move to a country house on the proceeds of the business. Soon after, Elizabeth died, but Henry remarried at the age of 72 to a woman 31 years his junior. His second son George (born 1868) continued the Hood dynasty from the 1890s, though the shop in St John Street, Ashbourne, remained ‘Henry Hood & Son’ in 1900.

Susanna (born 1838) never married, and lived with Elizabeth. She was also a dressmaker.

The books were passed down through Henry’s children to the donor’s husband.

Descriptive line

Printed sheets, bound with string, used by Henry and Francis Hood, Derby, about 1840


Ink; Paper


Printing; Handwriting


Children & Childhood; Education & Learning

Production Type

Limited edition


Museum of Childhood

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