Seal and Flag of the City of New York, edited by John B. Pine (1915) F128 CR114.P6
Of Seals and Rampant Beavers: New York City’s Flag on its 100th Birthday
June 23, 2015

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections Well, not those seals, as in, mammals sunning themselves on rocks.  We talk here of a heraldic emblem or insignia.  New York City’s seal and flag celebrate their 100th birthday this week, and yes, beavers are always a big part of the story.  The…

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“We Are All Americans:” Grant, Lee, and Ely Parker at Appomattox Court House
April 2, 2015

This post was written by Mariam Touba, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections. Robert E. Lee wore a puzzled look as he examined the officer’s dark features, then recovered enough to extend his hand and remark, “I am glad to see one real American here.” On that April 9 afternoon, 150 years ago, at the McLean House…

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Woman of Letters: Charlotte Lennox and The Life of Harriot Stuart
January 21, 2015

Written by Maureen Maryanski, Reference Librarian for Printed Collections. Among the uncatalogued treasures at the New-York Historical Society are two small, leather bound volumes I recently stumbled upon in the library stacks. Out of pure curiosity, I picked these volumes up and looked at the title page. The title read: The Life of Harriot Stuart,…

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Indian Summer
October 9, 2013

Above-average temperatures at other times of year may raise alarms of global warming, but autumn heat waves are still fondly referred to as “Indian summer.” So where does the term come from, and what exactly does it mean? A number of explanations have been advanced over the years, including the following: 1. In 1804, Charles…

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The Cherokee Nation and the Birth of a New Script
May 15, 2013

Written by Geraldine Granahan, CLIR project cataloger The Patricia D. Klingenstein Library of The New-York Historical Society has several items in its collections that were printed in the Cherokee language. One example is the above almanac, Cherokee Almanac 1861, which is written in Cherokee (or Tsalagi), an Iroquoian language used by the Cherokee people. The…

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Mr. Mitchell’s Muscular Map
February 14, 2012

Post written by Eric Robinson It’s hard to believe, but a document with the imperious title A Map of the British and French Dominions in North America was the cartographic basis for our American republic. John Mitchell’s 1755 masterpiece provided the lens with which the founding generation negotiated independence and plotted westward settlement. Needless to…

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