Great Headlines Speak For Themselves… Doolittle raid…

July 25, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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The best headlines need no commentary. Such is the case with the HERALD EXPRESS–EXTRA, Los Angeles, May 19, 1942: “DOOLITTLE DOOD IT”Doolittle Raid - WW2

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The Traveler… make your own island… a tribute…

July 21, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-7-21-2014-South-SeasToday I traveled back to Salem, Massachusetts, by the way of the Salem Gazette of July 19, 1814. There I found reporting in regards to Captain Porter and his taking possession of an island in the South Seas. The natives called it Noosheevah but he renamed it “Madison’s Island” after President Madison. He also establish Fort Madison as well.

Judge Parker provides a very nice tribute to the “Character of late Chief Justice” Samuel Sewall which he addressed at the Bar. In reading further information on the internet about Mr. Sewall, I found that his great-grandfather was a judge at the Salem witch trials!

~The Traveler

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A life wasted…

July 18, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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We were not designed to spend our days consumed with self, meaningless activity, and various forms of virtual reality (note: a quick search on the Rare Newspapers website for “self”, “meaningless activity”, and “virtual reality” is returned void).  The following article found in a National Intelligencer from November 21, 1848 is worth pondering:Blog-7-18-2014-Thoughts-on-Life-II

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A gem from the American Antiquarian Society…

July 14, 2014 by · 1 Comment 
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In 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.).

Frontier Scout117. Frontier Scout, Fort Rice, Dakota Territory, June 15, 1865

Thanks to Donald McKay Frost, AAS owns a complete run of the second newspaper printed in the Dakota Territory, preceded only by a paper of the same title issued at Fort Union the previous summer. Located in south central North Dakota, Fort Rice was a 500-foot square wooden stockade erected in the summer of 1864 to protect vital transportation routes from increasingly frequent Lakota attacks. Initially it was manned by “galvanized Yankees” — former Confederate prisoners of war who had enlisted in the Union Army rather than wait indefinitely in prison camps for parole or exchange.

In order to ward off the stress of isolated frontier living, the soldiers engaged in various diversions, including theatrical performances and the publication of their own newspaper printed on a portable press. Captain E. G. Adams and Lieutenant C. H. Champney of the First United States Volunteer Infantry Regiment served as editor and publisher respectively. In this inaugural issue, Adams encouraged the troops to contribute poems, stories, and adventures. “When this is done our paper is formed, a living, speaking, embodiment of the society in which we dwell.” The last of the fifteen weekly issues appeared on October 12, 1865, shortly before Adams and Champney left the fort. Most issues were printed on sheets of ruled blue ledger paper.

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Great Headlines Speak For Themselves… But In This Case…???

July 11, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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The best headlines need no commentary – they speak for themselves. However, sometimes they communicate the wrong message. Let’s hope the LOS ANGELES TIMES – EXTRA for November 22, 1963 was such an instance and not wishful thinking: “ASSASSINATE KENNEDYAssassinate Kennedy

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The Traveler… books for all… daring wears…

July 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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Blog-7-7-2014-Modest-SwimwearToday I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia, by way of The Atlanta Constitution dated July 7, 1914. There I found that Andrew Carnegie was being extremely generous… “Carnegie Willing To Endow Library In Every County”. He was going to be donating between $75,000.000 and $100,000,000 to establish libraries in country districts. “…He is determined to give his money away and die poor, and here is an opportunity. Seventy per cent of the people of the United States still are without access to good libraries…”.

The front page also has a headline “Young Swimmer, Who Wore One-Piece Suit at Piedmont, Dares Dangerous Hell Gate”. This shows includes a photo of Miss Nora Leahy in a sleeveless, skin-tight garment… which the year prior men were not even permitted to wear suits with sleeves less than an inch in length. My how far we’ve come! Is modesty based purely on cultural norms and/or expectations, or are there certain absolutes – 3rd world regions aside?

~The Traveler

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Freedom is never free…

July 4, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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The following chart found in the National Intelligencer from November 23, 1848 reminds us freedom is never free. Let’s never forget the cost paid by those who were willing to pay the ultimate price to obtain that which we so often take for granted.Blog-7-4-2014-Revolutionary-War-Casualties

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What got the juices flowing for Thomas Paine…

June 30, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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The Pennsylvania Magazine” was one of only two American magazines which published during the years of the Revolutionary War, including a June, 1775 issue containing a great coverage of Battle of Bunker Hill and Washington’s appointment as Commander-In-Chief, and ending with the July, 1776 issue which included the Declaration of Independence.

The Pennsylvania Magazine

The Pennsylvania Magazine

For most of its 19 month life, which began in January, 1775, it was edited by the famed Thomas Paine, employed by the publisher Robert Aitken. Aitken was often frustrated by Paine’s procrastination in providing material, as mentioned in Isaiah Thomas’ “History of Printing in America”:

“…Aitken contracted with Paine to furnish, monthly, for this work, a certain quantity of original matter; but he often found it difficult to prevail on Paine to comply with his engagement…Aitken went to his lodgings & complained of his neglecting to fulfill his contract…insisted on Paine’s accompanying him & proceeding immediately to business & as the workmen were waiting for copy. He accordingly went home with Aitken & was soon seated at the table with the necessary apparatus, which always included a glass, and a decanter of brandy. Aitken observed, ‘he would never write without that.’ The first glass of brandy set him thinking; Aitken feared the second would disqualify him, or render him intractable; but it only illuminated his intellectual system; and when he had swallowed the third glass, he wrote with great rapidity, intelligence and precision; and his ideas appeared to flow faster than he could commit them to paper. What he penned from the inspiration of the brandy was perfectly fit for the press without any alternation or correction.”

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Great Headlines Speak For Themselves… death of Fatty Arbuckle…

June 27, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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The best headlines need no commentary. Such is the case with the LOS ANGELES TIMES, June 29, 1933: “‘FATTY’ ARBUCKLE DIESFatty Arbuckle Death

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Remember these names from the “golden era”?

June 23, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 
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One of our more recent purchases was a sizable collection of  newspapers from the West Coast which included many 20th century issues covering the deaths of famous movie stars or Jean Harlow Death Reportentertainers. Not surprisingly, Los Angeles newspaper gave much coverage to the passing of some of the more iconic names of stardom from the “golden era”. Those of a certain age well remember many of famous names of the 1930′s-1950′s (totally unknown to the millennial generation) and I count myself among them, so it was with a certain amount of nostalgia that I read the reports as I was writing up the newspapers for future catalogs.

If I had any common reaction to the reports I read it was to the age of many when they died. When I think of such stars I always presumed they were in their late 60′s or late 70′s when they were still acting & much older when they died. But that was when I was in my teens and 20′s, and anyone who had been “around for awhile” seemed like they were much older than they actually were. I was struck by the ages of many when they died, and perhaps you might be as well. Here is a sampling:

Clark Gable Death ReportTyrone Power 45

Humphrey Bogart 57

Rudolph Valentino 31

George Gershwin 38

Nat “King” Cole 45

Clark Gable 59

Jean Harlow 26

Cary Cooper 60

Mario Lanza 38

Jayne Mansfield 34

Steve McQueen 50

Judy Garland 47

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