Folktales of America

Stockings Of Buttermilk, and Other Traditional Stories from the United States of America

Book Description

This exhilarating book brings together some of the best classic stories told in the United States. Many of the tales were brought to the USA from Europe, and their origins can be traced in English, Scottish, Irish, French, Spanish or German tradition. But wherever they spring from, the tales are filtered through an American consciousness, and told in a rich American voice. These vivid stories, full of magic, humour, and wisdom have been minimally retold by the editor, whose introduction and notes set them securely in their folklore context. Aunt Lizbeth Fields’ thoroughly American tale of ‘A Stepchild That Was Treated Mighty Bad,’ for example, is identified as a version of the Grimms’ ‘Snow White’. Read about Cold Feet and the Lonesome Queen, Lady Featherflight, The Gold in the Chimney, and The Cat That Went a-Traveling. These stories are ideal to read aloud or for older readers to enjoy discovering by themselves. Jacqueline Mair’s delightful illustrations, based on American folk art, have the stitched and embroidered texture of a much-loved family quilt.


‘Watch storytellers and students of American Folklore in search of fresh material fall on it with glad cries.’ ALA Booklist

About the Authors

Neil Philip is a writer, folklorist and poet and loves the art of storytelling in all its forms. He has an M.A. in English Language and Literature from Oxford University and a Ph.D. from London University in Children’s Literature and Folklore. Among his many books are Poets of the Inuit, The Adventures of Odysseus, and The Tale of Sir Gawain. His work has won numerous awards, including the Aesop Award of the American Folklore Award.


Jacqueline Mair is an artist well-loved for her vivid and atmospheric work. She has held solo shows, including in Mexico City, the USA, India and Great Britain. Her many books include Folktales of Mexico, and Indian Folk Tales, both published in new editions by Armadillo, as well as I Have a News: Rhymes from the Caribbean, and The Bottle Imp.