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1929 Text
The Goldfish Under the Ice
Text   Enlarged Text
front cover of The Goldfish Under the Ice

The Cedar Swamp Historical Society Collection contains many books by the famous Long Island author, Christopher Morley. Among them is a signed limited edition copy of The Goldfish Under the Ice, published in 1929. It tells the story of the Mistletoe family’s dog, Frisky and his adventures on Christmas Eve. The Mistletoes and Frisky are characters derived from the Morley family. The real-life Frisky belonged to Morley’s daughter Louise.

Morley notes in his introduction that he asked Frisky the type of story that he would like since “it seemed only proper to consult him as it was the first time he had been in a story” and that Frisky told him to write about the goldfish. Morley divides the story into three chapters. The first, tells about Frisky and his life as part of the Mistletoe household; the second describes the G. S. S. G. B. (Go to Sleep as Soon as you Go To Bed) club that the parents in the book, Mr. and Mrs. Mistletoe have created for their children; and the third chapter discusses Frisky’s encounter with the goldfish under the ice on Christmas Eve.

This edition of The Goldfish Under the Ice was published by Elkin, Mathews and Marrot in London in 1929 and is “Number Fourteen of the Woburn Books.” On the inside of the dust jacket, it is noted that “The Woburn Books” were a limited edition printing of 500 copies of 18 different novels. On the Copyright page, it is stated that “Five hundred and thirty numbered copies of this story have been set in Monotype 12-point Veronese, and printed by Robert MacLehose & Co. Ltd., at the University Press, Glasgow; Nos. 1-500 only are for sale and Nos. 501-530 for presentation.” This copy, numbered 343, is signed by the author.


Oakley, Helen McKelvey, Three Hours for Lunch. New York: Watermill Publishers, 1976.

Collection of Morley books available at Long Island University

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