Which speed studies book?

Forgive me if this has been answered in the past, but I need to ask: What speed studies book do you recommend for someone who writes pre-Anniversary more consistently than Anniversary? (Mostly, I think the short forms and conventions are faster.)

I have a 1920 Anniversary Speed Studies book, which I find useful for a lot of phrasing, but, because some of the brief forms are different from pre-anny, I find myself double checking the older system to be sure what I’m thinking is right.

Maybe there is nothing that’s that great in pre-anny speed work, but I was just wondering if anyone has suggestions?

(by wordwrangler2 for


13 comments Add yours
  1. I'm going to give you two answers.

    The 1917/1919 Speed Studies book is the one corresponding to Pre-Anniversary, so this should be the one. (I'm not aware of a 1920 Speed Studies book.)

    The second edition of the book came out in 1929, and that is Anniversary. I don't particularly care about this edition, because the presentation of the principles appears haphazard. It is an interesting book though; the letters served as the basis for the order of presentation of joined & disjoined prefixes and suffixes in the Functional Method manual. The practice material is good though.

    The best Speed Studies book is the third edition, which came out in 1941. It is Anniversary, but it matches the lessons of the Anniversary manual, so that you can be studying from both books at the same time.

    So my preference is the third edition, but in your case you may want to stay with the pre-anniv (first) edition.

  2. Thanks so much, Chuck. This is very helpful information. Sometimes the very number of old shorthand books can be perplexing, so it's good to get an opinion from someone who's taken more than a casual glance at things, as you obviously have.

  3. I notice that in the 1916 Speed Studies book there is a Wordsign (as brief forms are called) derivatives drill which is an alphabetical list of all the brief forms with all/most possible endings and beginnings. For some reason this useful tool is left out of the 1929 Speed Studies book. (I first discovered it because of it being recommended in the 1922 edition of Reporting Shortcuts for making sure you are sure in your knowledge of the brief forms.) Out of over 400 total wordsigns/brief forms, I find 21 differences between Pre-Anniversary and Anniversary, and they are all minor differences. Oftentimes it's just the omission or retention of an "e." (I counted every word that is called a brief form in either system; oftentimes one system spells a brief form the same way, but doesn't designate it as a brief form.)

    How did the Anniversary series get by without such a handy chart?

    1. It took a long time to upload. The google books one is not searchable. I used acrobat to make this one searchable. There's probably some freeware for ocr-ing pdfs and adding bookmarks, but I don't know what it is right now.

Leave a Reply