All of the editions of this five volume series were published by Harper and Brothers. Although the set was published in several different years, the formats were unchanged. The books have been called the "Little Learner Series" as well as the "Harper's Picture Books".

These books are red and measure 6.75 x 5.5.

  Copyright First edition
Title page
1. Learning to Talk 1855 1855
2. Learning to Think 1855 1856
3. Learning to Read 1856 1856
4. Learning About Common Things 1854/1856* 1857
5. Learning About Right and Wrong** 1857 1857

* This book has two copyright pages. One is 1854 and the other is 1856. There is no evidence that this book was published in 1854. I have been unable to find any evidence that any of the stories within the book were published in 1854 either.

**The 1856 edition of Learning to Think (but not the 1856 version of Learning to Read or the earlier 1855 Learning to Talk ) advertised book #5 as Learning about God and Duty. This title does not appear in any other ads and there is no evidence that a book with this title was ever published.

In addition to the first editions noted above, Harper and Brothers published this series in 1866 and 1874. The series was advertised by Harper into the 1890's. Although of interest, book #5 was dropped from the series list by that time.

Book Covers

Title pages

I have seen three different internal ad pages for this series. The ads precede the title page.

The earliest ad lists only three books. It appears that initially the Harper Picture Books was only going to be a three book series. This three book ad is from an 1855 Learning to Talk book. Most likely it was published prior to the printing of books #2 and #3 because it lists the latter books in a different order then they ultimately were listed in as of 1856.

The 1856 ad lists book #5 as Learning about God and Duty, a book that is most likely a phantom title. This was most likely an anticipated title in early 1856 but by later in 1856 the title had been replaced by Learning about Right and Wrong.

1855 ad

Early 1856 ad

Later in 1856 to the 1880's