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Jeannette Rankin: “old maid pacifist”
December 8, 2015

Few would argue that the events of December 8, 1941 match in significance the catastrophic events of the previous day but it’s worth recalling that this was the day Congress actually voted to declare war on Japan. Though the vote was all but a foregone conclusion, there was yet a lone voice of dissent to which Milton Halsey Thomas, then curator of…

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140 Years Ago Today: Boss Tweed Escapes!
December 4, 2015

This post was written by Marybeth Kavanagh, Reference Librarian On December 4, 1875, William Magear “Boss” Tweed, notorious grand sachem of New York City’s Democratic political machine Tammany Hall, escaped from the Ludlow Street jail where he was being held on charges of stealing somewhere between $20 and $300 million from the city treasury.  While awaiting trial, Tweed was granted special privileges not…

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From the Institutional Archives: “American Public Opinion and the War”
December 2, 2015

This post was written by Larry Weimer, Project Archivist for the N-YHS Institutional Archives. Lectures and other presentations have been a staple of New-York Historical Society’s programs for virtually all of its history. Although the historical past has been the focus of many of these programs, N-YHS has long recognized that the present is history in…

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Academic Freedom and Treason at Columbia: The Strange Case of Professor R.S. McCulloh
November 25, 2015

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections. With colleges deep into their semesters, we continue to hear of controversies regarding academic freedom, sometimes in the manner of faculty who express sympathy with those deemed to be enemies of the United States.  In that light, we take a moment to ponder…

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AHMC of the Month: Susan B. Anthony Letter
November 17, 2015

This post was written by cataloger Catherine Falzone. The American Historical Manuscript Collection (AHMC) contains seven letters by Susan B. Anthony, American feminist and campaigner for women’s suffrage. The letters mostly concern various speaking engagements—both her own and those of Frederick Douglass, Julia Ward Howe, Theodore Tilton, and Mary L. Booth. The following letter is from Anthony…

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Veterans Day: One Soldier’s Observations on the Macabre and the Mundane
November 11, 2015

This post was written by Julita Braxton, AHMC Cataloger. This Veterans Day, with a focus on an item from the American Historical Manuscript Collection, we have the privilege of seeing the Second World War through the eyes of one soldier: Charles Murray Foster of the 1st Battalion of the 114th Infantry Regiment, United States Army, deployed to…

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Draft Riot Sketches: At Rest and To Arms!
November 9, 2015

This post was written by Jonah Estess, former digital projects intern in the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library. Martin Scorsese’s Gangs of New York familiarized audiences with the New York Draft Riots, a tumultuous, multi-partied conflict including Five Points neighborhood residents, the uptown elite, Union soldiers, rioters, as well as New York’s African American population. From a sketchbook filled…

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Lights Out! Recalling the 1965 Blackout
November 4, 2015

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections. New York City blackouts come with their own lore: There was the “Bronx is burning,” Son-of-Sam summer, and the looting of July 1977. Then there was the shadow of terrorism that hung about the darkened streets in August 2003, when suddenly the grid…

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‘No Stamped Paper to be Had': The Stamp Act 250 Years Later
October 28, 2015

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections “The stamps are now a Commodity no Body knows what to do with, and are more abominable, and dangerous to be meddled with, than if they were infected with the Pestilence,” wrote the New-York Mercury 250 years ago. “The stamps” was the shorthand…

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