If one goes to Google Books and types in Knitting in the search engine, a list of hundreds of knitting books will come up. If one clicks on the "Limited Preview" link on the left side, a list of books will come up that one can view, cover to cover. Included in my short perusal of this list is Knitting Without Tears, by Elizabeth Zimmerman, Stitch 'n' Bitch, Mary Thomas's Book of Knitting Patterns, 2-At-A-Time Socks: The Secret of Knitting Two at Once on One Circular Needle, by Melissa Morgan-Oakes and hundreds more, including knitting fiction. Many are vintage, many current. What a find!
Looking at this book, Exercises in Knitting by Cornelia Mee, I find that the patterns call for knitting and seaming. Seam being another word for purl. Once I figured that out, the patterns make sense and would be fun to try.
I find it interesting the sock patterns from the late 1800s and early 1900s often have a seam stitch, a purled stitch in the stockinette, in the center back, so the hand knitted socks have the same appearance as machine knitted socks that were indeed seamed up the back.