Autograph book of Mary Sweeney, 1924-27. BV Sweeney, Mary. New-York Historical Society.
A Bunch of Happy Campers
July 21, 2016

This post was written by Tammy Kiter, Manuscript Reference Librarian. Along with sweltering heat and humidity, summer also brings with it a deep sense of nostalgia. Many of us hold fond memories of backyard barbecues, building sand castles at the beach and watching fireflies light up the trees at night. This time of year also…

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From the Lab: Conservation of a Pre-Revolutionary War Broadside
July 13, 2016

This post was written by Catherine Stephens, Enhanced Conservation Work Experience Assistant, Summer 2016. In Colonial America, broadsides were one of the fastest ways to spread news, rally support for a political cause, or to advertise for popular products and entertainments. These unassuming paper notices were printed in large quantities and were displayed publicly or…

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AHMC of the Month: Witness to the Murder of President Lincoln
July 5, 2016

This post was written by Matthew Murphy, Head of Cataloging and Metadata. Throughout our lives, at some point or another, we will all bear witness to a historical event. Often by accident or happenstance, we end up being part of something that echoes through the ages. Many of us keep record of our experiences, often…

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“So terrible a calamity”: Timothy Pickering, Slavery and the Declaration of Independence
July 1, 2016

Americans have spilled quite a lot of ink discussing the Declaration of Independence’s five words “all Men are created equal.” As with any historical text, their meaning in eighteenth century America is important to avoid drawing anachronistic conclusions. In particular, many would point out that many contemporaries commonly wouldn’t have regarded African Americans as commensurate with “all Men.” This underscores slavery’s denial of…

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Alexander Hamilton’s Version of #NeverJohnAdams
June 28, 2016

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections What to do if you are a leader of a political party and you fear that your party’s presumptive nominee for the presidency thoroughly lacks the temperament for the office? If he is erratic, animated by “disgusting egotism,” “distempered jealousy,” and “ungovernable indiscretion”?…

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“A Supply of Pure and Wholesome Water:” Views of the Old Croton Aqueduct
June 22, 2016

This blog post was written by Marybeth Kavanagh, Reference Archivist for Prints, Photographs and Architectural Collections. “A supply of pure and wholesome water is an object so essential to the health and prosperity of a city, that it should form one of the leading features of the public improvements which characterize its growth”- F.B. Tower, civil…

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AHMC of the Month: Farmer/Author James Johns of Vermont
June 15, 2016

This post was written by cataloger Miranda Schwartz. An unusual item in the American Historical Manuscript Collection is a hand-printed, or pen-printed, newspaper by Vermont farmer James Johns (1797-1874). Born in Huntington, Vermont, Johns received little formal education but from the age of 13 on he wrote—and wrote and wrote—not stopping until his death at…

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And then there were ten: Brooklyn’s Landmarked Dutch Houses
June 8, 2016

This post was written by Joseph Ditta, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections. In her 1945 book Old Dutch Houses of Brooklyn Maud Esther Dilliard (1888-1977) recorded the stories of “all the ancient dwellings” which were then in existence around the borough so “that their early owners, the founders of Kings County, [would] not be forgotten in the…

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Mr. Egyptology and his “Outline of a Grand Chronological Atlas”
June 3, 2016

Few of us would have the temerity to summarize world history in a single volume but that is what the Swiss educator, cartographer and geographer Henri Venel attempted in the 1840s. We would hardly be aware of his name though were it not for a translation of that work by the English-born American Egyptologist George Gliddon. As it…

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