Lady of the House, Christmas 1907
Advertisement for Blackie's Christmas Annual
By Victorian times, most popular magazines had a bumper Christmas Edition, and further annuals were produced by publishers for both adults and children. Annuals such as Beetons were equally popular and its 1887 edition introduced Sherlock Holmes to the reading public. The 1909 edition carried a story by Edith Nesbitt which has been identified as an inspiration for C.S. Lewis’ use of the wardrobe motif in The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. Blackie's Annuals were equally popular. The publishing firm Blackie and Sons was originally founded in 1809 in Glasgow but expanded to have branches in London and Bombay. For some years they also had a Dublin office. They published a range of educational and children’s material and in later years stories by writers such as Angela Brazil and Enid Blyton. The covers of their annuals were distinctive in style and very attractive. They ceased publishing in 1991.