Vest Pocket Helps

Cover of “Supremacy of God’s Law,” along with a quarter for scale.

Vest Pocket Helps (1913) win the contest for the smallest known Paul Elder “books.” At 2½ x 3½ inches and only ten or twelve pages of text, they’re each a very slim piece. But then, that’s why they’re called Vest Pocket Helps: so that they will easily fit into your vest pocket. Back in the era when daily attire (at least, a man’s daily attire) always included a vest pocket, it was a self-explanatory title.

Each book contains several short passages on Christian themes. The books credit no author, but the copyright page indicates that “these pages have been compiled from random readings.” The compiler was presumably not Paul Elder (who would surely have credited himself, as he did on earlier publications, such as Mosaic Essays), but more likely one of Elder’s favorite compilers of religion-themed books, such as Agness Greene Foster.

Title page of “Supremacy of God’s Law”

There were eight titles in the series, conveniently listed on the copyright page. The books were sold for 10¢ each, or 80¢ for the set of eight “gathered and tied with linen tape.”

The series was incorrectly titled Vest Pocket Tracts in the printed editions of the checklist.

Page 1 of “Supremacy of God’s Law”
Pages 4-5 of “Supremacy of God’s Law”
Cover of “God’s Ever Presence”
Title page of “God’s Ever Presence”

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