Street Corner Society

Skip to site-wide links.

Skip to site-wide navigation links.

Children's Story Garden  >  Stories of Friends

Happy girl in field.

The Children's Story Garden

Stories of Friends


The following are marked in the book's thematic index as "Stories About Friends" (F). Quaker principles that were identified by the editorial committee as pertaining to each story are also shown below.

1600s - early Friends

Mary Proude
Mary and her husband Isaac Pennington were very active among early Friends. Her daughter by a previous marriage, Gulielma Springett, married William Penn.
George Fox and Oliver Cromwell
George Fox received a surprisingly warm reception from Oliver Cromwell, warlord of England in the later years of the Protectorate.
Our Word Is Our Keeper
Thomas Ellwood and other Friends gain the respect of officials charged with keeping them imprisoned.
A Ride Toward War Paint
Early in the settlement of Pennsylvania, a group of Friends ride out toward a supposedly hostile Indian village.

1700s - in the Light, living with others

The Quiet Voice
An early experience for John Woolman.
The Highwayman
A rough encounter on a lonely road.
A Silent Meeting
Jacob Ritter, raised a German Lutheran, became a Friend after experiencing the American Revolution.
The White Feather
A Quaker family, living on the frontier at a time of war, choose to stay when their neighbors have left.
The Meeting That Would Not Break Up
A "Youth Meeting" held in Abington, Pennsylvania, in 1797.
Mind the Light
A Friend follows the call of a voice in the night, not knowing why.
The Silver Tankard
A child welcomes strangers to her family's home while her parents are out.


The Latch String
A Quaker family in Cincinatti, Ohio, decide not to latch the door when hostile Indians are believed to be near.
The Plow
A dispute between neighbors is resolved by a third party taking friendly initiative.
The Sermon in the Wilderness
Stephen Grellet, evangelical Friend, delivers a sermon deep in the woods when he thinks no-one is listening.
Maisie's First Meeting
The experience of an English child who attends meeting for worship.
Advertising for a Thief
A loving response to the theft of valuable property.
The Rescue
Isaac Hopper takes direct action in the fray of the anti-slavery movement.
A Courageous Visitor
Samuel Levick ventures into a man's house when he is told, repeatedly, that he is not welcome.
The True Story of a Letter
A child's letter to poet John G. Whittier elicits reminiscence of his Quaker childhood.

1900s - service

The Four Sous
A story told by Friends Reconstruction Unit in France, toward the end of the First World War, the predecessor organization to the A.F.S.C. (American Friends Service Committee).

Stories of and about Friends more generally

The thematic index doesn't indicate some of the other stories that are also about Friends. Most are from about the same period as when the book was produced.

The Christmas Council of the Winter Folk
Written by a member of the committee. A child meets in with birds and smaller wild animals from around the farm where she lives, and finds they serve a higher purpose.
Billy's Accuser
A child's conscience. Originally published in The Children's Friend.
An Inventory
A parable of consumer culture. Mentions "First-day school," the Quaker term for "Sunday school."
The Wasted Oak Leaf
Written by a member of the committee. A parable for what today we call "recycling," written nearly a century ago.
The Mud Wasp
Written by a member of the committee.
Written by Alice W. Jackson, a Philadelphia-area Friend, about her childhood experience (circa 1870) of her own grandmother.
Trading Horses
Using plain speech — "thee," "thy," "thou." At the end, one addresses the other as "Friend."
The Mistake
Written by a member of the committee. None of the characters are obviously Quaker, but the story shows how Friends reflected on their encounters with deeply entrenched racial prejudice.

From: The Children's Story Garden, Stories collected by a committee of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting — Anna Pettit Broomell, Emily Cooper Johnson, Elizabeth W. Collins, Alice Hall Paxson, Annie Hillborn, and Anna D. White. Illustrated by Katharine Richardson Wireman and Eugenie M. Wireman. Published in 1920 by J. B. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia.