As folks here know, I adore this little pattern. It’s not mine, but I’ve knit at least sixty pairs for friends and family. Ann Kreckel posted it to the Ancient KnitList mailing list in 1995 (in its pre-Yahoo academic server days). It is Ann’s redaction of an older pattern passed down to her from her mother. There’s also a similar pattern that appeared a couple of years later in Threads Magazine (before they abandoned handwork), sent in from a lady then in her 90s, who said she learned it as a girl. I’m still looking for the ultimate source of both her and Ann’s mother’s pattern, probably in a women’s magazine or knitting booklet published before 1920.
In any case, for the longest time, this pattern has been available in the archives of the KnitList, and later on the now apparently defunct Woolworks.org website. Most of Woolworks’ content can be found here on the Internet Archive, via the Wayback Machine, a nifty tool for exhuming dead websites.
Ann’s pattern for Jane’s Baby Booties is here at this link, in full.
Woolworks disappearance is a shame, especially in that it appears to have happened without comment. Woolworks, compiled and maintained by EmilyWay, was one of the first comprehensive knitting sites on the ‘Net, and Emily should be one of the Internet knitting community’s patron saints.
In any case, having tried but failed to find Ann herself, I’ve shared the link above, but am loathe to repost her pattern verbatim. It’s hers, and I respect her copyright. If you know Ann, please match-make the two of us together, because I’d like to host the full text of her excellent design here.