We celebrate the hard work and determination of the graduates of 2020. Congratulations! To paraphrase Elle Wood’s final line from “Legally Blonde” … You did it!
Here are some of our top 5 suggestions for vintage and collectible gifts for graduates as they face the daunting task of entering “the real world.” Good luck to all!
2. “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” (1990) by Theodor Geisel, a.k.a. Dr. Seuss. This book has become a traditional present in recent years for graduates. A first edition, pop-up version is $100 on Biblio.com.
3. Have a medical graduate in your family? How about presenting them with a Phrenology head. Phrenology was a medical theory promoted by a German doctor, Franz Josef Gall, in 1796. It stayed popular from 1810 to 1840 and is still accepted by some today. The bumps on your head could be read by a phrenologist and he would identify your intelligence, self-esteem, character, and personality traits. Antique phrenology heads sell today from $500 to thousands of dollars. A phrenology head for $68 on Etsy.com.
4. Graduates with their hearts set to be writers might appreciate a vintage inkwell to help record their prose. Ready-made ink was first made about 1836 and was sold in bottles. The desk inkwell had a narrow hole so the pen would not slip inside. Inkwells were made of many materials, such as pottery, glass, pewter and silver. A mahogany inkstand with 2 cut-glass bottles and hinged lids from the 1800s sold for $112. Photo: Leland Little
5. Teaching is a noble profession and if you know an education graduate, you might want to give them a McGuffey’s Eclectic Readers, the most widely-used schoolbooks from 1836 until the early 20th century. The author was William Holmes McGuffey (1800– 1873), a language professor at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. McGuffey Readers can be found at house sales, flea markets and in online shops. They sell for $5 to $65, depending on age and condition. A “McGuffey’ Fourth Eclectic Reader Revised Edition” 7-book set is $65 on Esty.com.