A gem from the American Antiquarian Society…

January 30, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-1-30-2015In celebration of its 20oth anniversary the American Antiquarian Society published a beautiful  exhibition catalog titled “In Pursuit Of A Vision – Two Centuries of Collecting at the American Antiquarian Society”. Featured are a fascinating array of books, documents, maps & other paper ephemera, as well as several very rare & unusual newspapers we felt worthy of sharing with our collectors (with permission from the A.A.S.).

93. “Moniteur de la Louisiane“, New Orleans, February 21, 1810

The Moniteur de la Louisiane, established in 1794 by Louis Duclot, was the first newspaper published in Louisiana. Because so few early issues have survived, its history is difficult to piece together. The earliest known issue — since lost in a fire but preserved in facsimile — was dated August 25, 1794; all other extant issues are from the 1800s. Although founded when Louisiana was under Spanish control, the Moniteur was published primarily in French, the language of Louisiana’s majority population. Over time the newspaper grew in size from octavo to quarto to folio, and it also change publishers. This 1810 issue lists Jean Baptiste Le Seur Fontaine as publisher, A role he had assumed by 1803 and perhaps as early as 1797. Publication apparently ceased in 1814. When Fontaine died that year, he bequeathed to the city of New Orleans his personal file of the Moniteur.

This is one of two issues of the Moniteur sent to AAS by Edward Larocque Tinker as part of his very substantial gift of early Louisiana newspapers and periodicals.

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They put it in print…

January 26, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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It was such a tragedy to America when Alexander Hamilton, the founding father of the United States, chief of staff to Washington in the Revolutionary War, and America’s first Secretary of the Treasury, was killed in a duel, an event he opposed but honor forced him to participate.  His words from shortly before the duel are telling: ““My religion and moral principles are strongly opposed to the practice of dueling…My wife & children are extremely dear to me…I am conscious of no ill will to Col. Burr distinct from political opposition…But it was, as I conceive, impossible for me to avoid it…”.  The report is found in the “Middlesex Gazette” newspaper of July 20, 1804 (see below).

His wounds at the hand of Aaron Burr–who curiously was Vice President at the time–would prove fatal. His comments give evidence to the value of honor among the early patriots, even when they lead to a tragic end.Blog-1-26-2015-Alexander-Hamilton-Duel

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The Traveler… Zeppelin bombing… hidden in the city…

January 23, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-1-19-2015Today I traveled to New York City by the way of the New York Tribune (January 20, 1915). There I found the headline “Zeppelin Throws Bombs At Sandringham Palace; Airmen Brought Down.” This was the reporting of the first time that Great Britain had been bombed by zeppelins, attaching them at night. Sandringham was one of the royal residences.

Another article on the front page was of a witness to the death of a bride almost a year ago surrendered herself to authorities. They thought that she had fled to Europe, only to find that she had found it easy to hide within New York City itself!

~The Traveler

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Great Headlines Speak For Themselves… Martin Luther King, Jr. slain…

January 19, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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The best headlines need no commentary. Such is the case with the LOS ANGELES TIMES, April 5, 1968: “DR. KING SLAIN BY SNIPER IN MEMPHISBlog-1-23-2015-Dr.-Martin-Luther-King-Jr-Slain

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The Civil War… January, 1865

January 15, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-1-16-2015What news was reported in January, 1865 – 150 years ago? Such a walk back in time through the eyes of those who read the daily and weekly newspapers of the period can be quite revealing. This is why we often say, “History is never more fascinating than when it’s read from the day it was first reported.” The following link will take you back in time to show the available newspapers from the Rare & Early newspapers website. There’s no need to buy a thing. Simply enjoy the walk back in time:

January, 1865

A sampling of what you will find may include articles and info regarding: Alfred Tennyson, Sherman takes Savannah, General John Bell Hood escapes, “Rebels” turning against the rebellion, Confederates report that Savannah has returned to the Union, Letters from Hardee & Beauregard, slaves in court, Farewell orders of General Butler, Confederates admit a defeat near Petersburg, the capture of Fort Fisher, Savannah’s first Union-occupation newspaper, the Battle of Nashville, Robert E. Lee appointed Commander-in-Chief, and more. Enjoy!

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They put it in print…

January 12, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-1-12-2015Tabloid journalism was alive and well in 18th century America. If you thought “sleazy” reports were a concoction of the 20th century, you would be wrong, as newspaper editors had, for hundreds of years, few concerns about slandering those they found offensive or who were on the other side of the political fence.

The “Pennsylvania Ledger And Weekly Advertiser” of December 24, 1777” was a Tory newspaper (loyal to the King, not the American cause of independence) and on page 2 the editor printed portions of a letter from George Washington to his wife, intercepted on its route. Obviously no friend of Washington’s, he even publishes the letter as a separate piece and offers for sale in his shop: ” “The printer has received from New York a few copies of an intercepted letter from General Washington to his Lady, dated June 24, 1776, which he is now selling at his shop in Market Street. The following is an extract.”

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Time capsule dating to 1795 included coins, newspapers…

January 9, 2015 by · 1 Comment 
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Blog-1-9-2015-Boston-Time-CapsuleIt’s all over the news (thank you API): “Time capsule dating to 1795 included coins, newspapers!” The time capsule was embedded in a cornerstone of the historic Massachusetts Statehouse by a group which included Samuel Adams and Paul Revere. The contents, in part, contained a number of coins, a silver plate with one of Paul Revere’s engravings – often used in the creation of the mastheads for various Boston area newspapers, and several late-18th century Boston newspapers. As newspaper collectors ourselves, we’ll be anxious to discover their exact titles and dates. While we have several authentic issues from the 1700’s with either Boston mentions or which were printed in Boston, it will be interesting to see if those placed within the capsule were included due to noteworthy content, their containing Paul Revere engravings, or for yet another reason. A video and related article covering the opening of the capsule is available at: 18th Century Time Capsule

 

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The Traveler… Johnson’s “Great Society”… death of a poet…

January 5, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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Today I traveled back to January 5, 1965 by way of The Springfield Union, Massachusetts (January 5, 1965). There I found the reporting of President Johnson’s Blog-1-5-2014-T.S.-Eliot-DeState-of-the-Union message in which he presented several new programs. “…These are all parts of the Johnson design for a ‘Great Society’, he hopes will develop through decades ahead… the search begins for a way to ‘elevate the quality of our civilization.’…” This was to be for a better health care program for the elderly under the Social Security, to help develop regions suffering from distress and depression, new education programs, and more.

Also in the issue was the report of the death of poet and playwright T. S. Eliot. He won the Nobel Prize in literature in 1948 “for his outstanding pioneer contribution to present-day poetry”. His book of poetry “Old Possum’s Books of Practical Cats” is what the musical “Cats” was based on, which has been the third longest running show in Broadway history.

~The Traveler

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When “white paper” was unavailable the presses kept running…

January 2, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 
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We recently came across an interesting issue of The Daily Rocky Mountain News” from Denver, dated Oct. 4, 1864. The uniqueness was not in the reporting; it was in the newspaper itself. Rather than printed on traditional newsprint stock, this issue is printed on pink-colored tissue paper. Fortunately, although very flimsy, it is not the least bit fragile.

Blog-12-2-2014It was not unusual for print shops to run out of newsprint and to become inventive in finding ways to get out the day’s edition, particularly for newspapers in remote parts of the country as most paper mills were located in the Northeast.  Think of the famous wallpaper issues from the Civil War. Some investigating came across the reason. One website on the history of the “Rocky Mountain News” noted that: “…When the Indian outbreak caused an embargo on traffic over the Western plains in 1864-5, he frequently ran out of white paper, and in such emergencies he printed the news on wrapping paper gathered from Denver stores…”. So this pink paper was wrapping paper. I wonder how long the need for “necessity paper” lasted. We also have two more issues with a similar date which are printed on yellow and green paper. In any case, very interesting curiosities for this fascinating hobby.

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Before heading out to Your New Year’s Eve Party…

December 31, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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While celebrating the onset of the New Year through alcohol-blurred eyes has become an international tradition for many, before heading out to this year’s party, perhaps a gander at Dr. Benjamin Rush’s well known “Moral & Physical Thermometer” from the 18th century is in order (see below). While this work certainly holds a degree of validity, I wasn’t aware God measured morality according to such a scale, and I’ve searched without success to find such a tool within His Word. Might Dr. Rush have been using a different translation – or was this creation garnered from years of observation??? :) Regardless, while no such measuring stick has been bestowed upon humanity by their Creator, taking heed to the inherit dangers of over-consumption and His warnings regarding drunkenness would be both a wise and safe way to begin the new year. The passengers and drivers of vehicles you’ll be passing on your way home thank you in advance. Cheers!Blog-12-31-2014-Temperance

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