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Greetings! from the Postcard File
January 11, 2017

This post was written by Jill Reichenbach, Reference Librarian, Department of Prints, Photographs and Architectural Collections. At this time of year, many people fantasize about going on a relaxing vacation somewhere exotic, or at least warm. And while some lucky people actually do get to go on vacation, still more might receive a postcard from…

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“Ode” Lang Syne: New Year’s Poems
January 1, 2017

This post was written by Megan Cherry, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Fellow for 2016-2017. New Year’s comes with its own unique traditions, especially in New York. Approximately a million people will be gathering in Times Square this New Year’s Eve to watch the ball drop – a New York tradition since 1907. But one New…

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The Ties that Bound: Corset Controversy in the Victorian Era
December 29, 2016

This post was written by Tammy Kiter, Manuscript Reference Librarian. During chillier seasons, one may feel constricted by layers of sweaters, coats, scarves and other accessories designed to keep us warm and comfortable. But imagine how our foremothers felt in their confining corsets, also known as “stays,” of yesteryear. Although corsets had been in use…

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From The Lab: Stabilizing A Tattoo Sketchbook
December 21, 2016

This post was written by Saira Haqqi, Enhanced Conservation Work Experience (ECWE) Assistant. Our upcoming exhibition, Tattooed New York, will feature this delightful sketchbook containing tattoo designs by an unknown artist. Before it could be exhibited, the book needed some conservation treatment. When it came to the lab it showed signs of extensive use: the covers…

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Waste Not, Want Not: A Peculiar Binding in the Beekman Family Library
December 14, 2016

This post was written by Matthew Murphy, Head of Cataloging and Metadata Books can often tell stories far beyond the texts they contain. Every book is an artifact, built up from a multitude of components in a myriad of ways. Whether it is the paper the text is printed on, the thread the book was sewn with,…

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Postcard from Harry Zuckerman to his sister, January 8, 1919 (AHMC - Zuckerman, Harry)
AHMC of the Month: Harry Zuckerman and World War I
December 8, 2016

This post was written by Matthew Murphy, Head of Cataloging and Metadata Though it may often seem like an archival collection is a static thing, the fact of the matter is that many collections are always expanding. The American Historical Manuscript Collection is a prime example of this; it continues to grow as new materials…

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Cooking from Scratch: Manuscript Recipes
November 30, 2016

This post was written by Nina Nazionale, Director of Library Operations. With the approach of the winter holidays, many of us find ourselves flipping through recipe books we’ve compiled over the years—a motley mix of cards and sheets, handwritten and typed, photocopied and downloaded, clipped from newspapers and magazines — while also searching through cookbooks,…

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‘Twas the Night After Thanksgiving: Dick Gosman’s Dream
November 21, 2016

This post was written by Joseph Ditta, Manuscript Reference Archivist. Richard “Dick” Gosman (1875-1946) was born and raised on a farm in Blissville, Queens (the site is now occupied by Amtrak’s Sunnyside rail yard). Between the ages of ten and fourteen (1886-1889) he produced several handcrafted periodicals, of which his monthly People’s Paper ran the longest,…

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Portrait of Harriet Martineau. PR-052, Portrait File. New-York Historical Society
AHMC of the Month: Harriet Martineau’s “Life in the Sick-Room”
November 16, 2016

This post was written by AHMC cataloger Miranda Schwartz. Harriet Martineau was a prolific English author and thinker. Born in 1802, Martineau was an avid, self-educated reader (as was common at the time, only the boys in the family were sent to university), and, after the failure of her father’s business textile mill in 1829,…

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