|Inscription on inside cover of MS0176|
|Signature on title page of MS0023|
I've written about the John Hancock family bible before, but it includes one of my favorite inscriptions in our collection. John Hancock not only signed his full name with an apostrophe "s" to indicate that he was the book's owner, but he also wrote "thou shalt not steal, saith the Lord" perhaps as a warning to keep someone from walking off with an item from his personal library. That saying seems to be one of his favorites, as he wrote the same inscription in a psalm book also in our collection.
These inscriptions were all written in the late 1700s and remain boldly visible almost 250 years later. I'm sure that the next time I inscribe a book, I'll pause and think about the message that I am recording for posterity!
By Elizabeth Roscio, Library and Archives Manager