Van Meter, W.C. The Little Wanderer's Friend: The Quarterly Issue of the Howard Mission and Home for Little Wanderers, July, 1869. New York: Howard Mission, 1869. First Edition. 
Printed peach wrapper, 5 1/4 x 7 3/4 inches, 72 clean pp., some creasing to the wrappers. Pp. 42-55 printed with music notation, round notes in four parts. Good. Pamphlet.
A periodical intended to advertise the work of the Howard Mission, to ask for the prayers of supporters, and to solicit funds for the work. It describes some of the workers, the results of various missionary efforts, has various anecdotes from the work, records incidents of every day life, and has a "Musical Department" with 14 pp. of hymns with music, including the following by Fanny Crosby: Looking Unto Jesus; Watching, Hoping, Praying; and Marching On To Glory. Includes a list of donations/donors and the Financial Statement for Feb.-May, 1869. There are 9 pp. of adverts from local businesses in support of the Mission.
Located at 40 New Bowery St., the Mission considered its field to be the Fourth Ward of New York City. Founded by the Baptist minister Rev. W. C. Van Meter in 1861 to minister to the orphans and "Children of the Street" during the Civil War, the mission was able to expand with a new building in 1867. Fanny Crosby was one of the volunteer workers at the Mission. During the first several decades of the Mission Rev. Van Meter worked to place orphans with American settlers in the West. He ministered at both the Five Points Mission and the Howard Mission, was also Founder and Superintendent of the Italian Bible Society and Sunday School Mission, with headquarters in Rome. He translated the Gospel of John into Italian. The Howard Mission in NYC was dedicated to the work of helping the orphans of immigrants to America.
Rev. William Charles Van Meter (1820- 1888), b. near Elizabethtown, KY; d. Rome, Italy. His family moved to Illinois when he was eleven, where his father was an active Baptist for the cause of missions, and a deacon in his church. The son was converted at age 13; at 17 entered Shurtleff College at Alton, IL. He was a supporter of the abolitionist cause, and in fact was "one of the fourteen young men who pledged themselves to defend the Rev. E. P. Lovejoy," who was killed by a mob for printing abolitionist material. He then studied at Granville College in Ohio until 1843, afterwards returned to Kentucky to begin preaching. In 1854 "he removed to New York City and began his important work there, first in connection with the Five Point Mission. In May, 1855, he took, as an experiment, his first company of homeless children to Illinois, eighteen in number. This he continued until about 1872, visiting the West within that period about seventy times, and providing homes in this way for between two and three thousand children...In June, 1861, he founded the Howard Mission, or Home for Little Wanderers...In February, 1872, he was appointed by the [Baptist] Publication Society to begin a mission at Rome. In 1878, the society not wishing to continue its appropriations, Mr. Van Meter, under a new organization, the Italian Bible and Sunday-School Mission, resumed it upon a new basis...Mr. Van Meter has warm supporters in various denominations in this country and in England, and prosecutes his work with an enthusiasm that wins friends to the cause wherever he goes." - Cathcart, The Baptist Encyclopedia (1883).