Peter Sheaf Hersey Newell (b)) (1862-1924) was born on a farm in Illinois but showed no inclination for the farming life. He was educated in public schools and showed and early ¬and continuing¬ talent for caricatures. Even when he moved into illustration magazines and books, humor is always a primary part of the content.
He became one of the biggest names in the world of periodicals. By the 1880s he was publishing illustrations in publications such as Harper’s Weekly, Harper’s Bazaar, Scribner’s Magazine, Judge, and The Saturday Evening Post.
He wrote and illustrated several inventive, somewhat bizarre, yet popular children’s books, such as Topsys and Turvys (1893), Mother Goose’s Menagerie (1901), (The Hole Book) (cite)) (1908), and The Slant Book (1910).
Topsys and Turveys was a collection of poems and images which could be viewed upside-down or right-side up. The Hole Book had a literal hole at the center of each page to indicate the path of a book, and The Slant Book took the shape of a rhomboid and told the story of a baby carriage careering down a hill. The Rocket Book shows a rocket passing through a house (via an actual hole in every page) with a flabbergasted family looking on.
Newell also illustrated Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland The Hunting of the Snark and Alice’s In the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll.