In May 1864, Louisa May Alcott submitted “Jamie's Wonder Book,” a fantasy story, along with other Christmas tales to Walker, Wise and Company of Boston. After learning that the firm could not publish it, she then interested Ticknor and Fields, who had recently published one of her “fairy” stories. They agreed to publish the volume in 1866; however, the manuscript was lost, and Alcott was eventually paid $150 for her work. By 1874, when James R. Osgood, whose firm succeeded Ticknor and Fields, discovered the lost fairy tale collection, Alcott claimed that she had already rewritten and published most of the work. However, “Jamie's Wonder Book” remained unpublished. In Alcott's fantasy story, Jamie, a lame, motherless boy, discovers magic fern seed, which when consumed on midsummer's eve, allows the child to understand and converse with animals and insects. In his magical adventure, Jamie learns much about the wonders of the natural world.

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