La Historia de La Gansa Amorosa

Laura Wasowicz of the American Antiquarian Society on The Transatlantic Transformation of Poor Molly Goosey into La Gansa Amorosa

Hosted by Caxton Club

Monday, March 27, 2023, at 7:30pm ET

This virtual program is free, but registration is required. You will be sent an email with a link and instructions on how to join the program upon registration. Even if you can’t attend at the scheduled time, if you’re interested, please register. After the program, the Caxton Club will send an email to all registrants, asking if you’d like a link to the complete recording. That way you can see the program even if you couldn’t attend live, ran into technical issues, or simply wanted to watch it again.


This presentation explores the appropriation, adaptation, and translation of the picture book Michaelmas Day or The Fate of Poor Molly Goosey. Originally issued by London publisher Dean & Co. ca. 1843, it was quickly reprinted in Philadelphia by George S. Appleton; in about 1850 the text was Americanized and issued by Boston publisher Wier & White under the title Thanksgiving Day. Ca. 1870, New York publisher D. Appleton & Company translated the picture book into Spanish and issued it as La Historia de La Gansa Amorosa for sale in the emerging Hispanic book market in North and South America, enlisting picture book manufacturer McLoughlin Brothers. Tracing the transnational, trans-lingual history of Molly, this study illuminates the use of recognized holidays to reach new markets.

Laura WasowiczLaura Wasowicz is Curator of Children’s Literature at the American Antiquarian Society. In this capacity, she oversees the growth, description, and use of the AAS Children’s Literature Collection comprised of 30,000 American children’s books issued between 1650 and 1899. She has written on various aspects of American children’s book publishing, picture book iconography, and children’s reading habits, including essays published in A de Grummond Primer: Highlights of the Children’s Literature Collection (University Press of Mississippi, 2021) and other publications.

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