Good. Item #6292
Germantown: Michael Billmeyer, 1828. Octavo pamphlet; 34pp. Self-cover with hand-threaded binding reinforcement. Text printed entirely in black-letter, and in German.
Edges show some insect taste-testing, and erosion in layers, but pages are whole. Back cover missing. Obtrusive, but necessary, repair to front cover in archival tape by previous collector.
Not quite as bold and abundant in its predictions as the better known Farmer’s Almanac, but with plenty of zodiacal and theological “data.” Michael Billmeyer was the most prominent printer for the German-speaking community in Pennsylvania. Germantown (now part of Philly), was a Quaker and Mennonite stronghold and one of the centers of the northern anti-slavery movement. The allegorical woodcut on the cover is the star feature of the pamphlet. Mercury flies in over a port town that might be in Pennsylvania but looks a bit more like something from the Hanseatic League. He is flourishing a banner that translates “Hoping for better yet”—which is to say, approximately, “Keep your sunnyside up.”
Despite time's ill usage, Herr Egelmann's almanac remains a pleasant marvel of domestic arcana and Pennsylvania history. It’s always sunny in Philadelphia.