Monday, July 17, 2006

Old Leather Yard Sale Find...

I could spend hours in a good thrift shop. Notice I said "good"....something my area sadly lacks. I also love a good yard sale where I occasionally come across something really interesting.

Such was the case a few years ago when Molly and I were out doing some yard sales. She was looking for specific items so I let her roam ahead of me most of the time plus she has an excellent eye for things.

We were at a sale in the L.A. area where she lived at the time. Just a regular house. Probably your typical family. But....

I spied something that looked rather intriguing. A bit like a leather pouch or something like that.

I picked it up, opened it and saw pages of neatly handwritten entries. I decided it was worth a possible buy, depending on the price. By this time Molly had gathered up her items and we both approached the person in charge. The woman looked at everything, as one lump purchase, and gave a price that was very low for all the stuff we had. Molly said "ok", we paid and left with our treasures.

Upon further, and closer inspection, the book appears to be some kind of ledger. And it is all handwritten with the most precise writing I think I've ever seen. And here's the interesting part....I think it is either written in Italian or maybe Latin or some language like that!

This is what it looks like inside....

And the opening page has 1786 written at the top! The date, maybe??!!

I went to one of those online free translation sites and tried to have the title translated....not much luck. The title on the front of the book says "Libro di Grasce per Vitto (the next word is faded and parts are missing) per i Lavoratori della Fattoria di Capalle"

If anyone out there in blogland can translate this I would love to know what it says. I think it looks authentic but then again I'm not an expert on old books!! The leather does appear to be very old and is beginning to separate. I don't have any clue as to how to preserve this. Any suggestions?


  1. All I can translate for you if that LIBRO is book, DI is by or some, PER, has a few meanings one is about, another is during, VITTO means food, and FATTORIA means homestead or farm. So basically your three main words so far are a book by ....about.. Don't know if this is any help to you. I only know a few words in Italian. Perhaps, someone else might come along and help. Maybe it could be an inventory of food grown or sold.

    I have always wanted to go to yard sales, no one does them over here. Love xx

  2. The Linda10:47 AM

    the i Lavoratori della Fattoria di Capalle translates to ' the Workers of the Small farm of Capalle '

  3. Daisy and Linda - Thanks for help with the translation. I guess I was on the right track.

  4. What a awesome find Janet,,wow! I love old journals, books, basically I love all antiques!

  5. What a find!!! Although I'd be tempted to keep it and/or use it in my art collage, it might be a valuable addition to a local museum's collection. Please keep us informed, as this is very interesting!


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