New-York Historical Society

Author Archives: Ryan McCarthy

Edison and the tattoo

Thomas Edison is best known his most influential inventions, but even among his lesser accomplishments we can find a success story — of sorts.  Diagram of Edison’s Electric Pen. Lefferts Family Papers, MS 379 Even though it is believed to be the first American electric motor powered device, the electric pen is certainly not the […]

Vegetables are people too!

At least they are in these delightful trade cards from Rice’s Seed Company.  Bella C. Landauer Collection, PR 031 Talk about genetic engineering! How would you like to find one of these growing in your garden?  Bella C. Landauer Collection, PR 031 These amusing anthropomorphic illustrations were produced in the mid-1880’s, a time when – […]


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