Snapshot 1909… The American Spirit takes flight…

November 1, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

It is easy to assume the 1903 “first flight” in Kitty Hawk instantly made Wilbur and Orville Wright household names, but the truth is this momentous event was ignored by many newspapers, and even when it did appear the coverage was minimal and often buried on an inside page. Sadly, this trend continued for several years, with the newspapers in France being a notable exception. However, continued progress with their experiments in flight, coupled with the setting of one record after another, eventually led to them receiving the recognition they deserved. Although a hair more than 5 years after their historic flight in Kitty Hawk, the January 2, 1909 Scientific American, published shortly after the Wright brothers won the first-ever Michelin Cup, included one of the most eloquent tributes of the era – words which embody what was once meant by “The American Spirit”, and continue to stand tall as a recipe for meaningful achievement.

They put it in print, 1917 – “The more things change…”

October 4, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

A recent post focused on a headline which borrowed Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr’s famous words from 1849: “the more things change, the more they stay the same” (translated from “plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”). This tendency, as applied to human behavior, has certainly been substantiated time and time again in the world of politics.

During former President Trump’s term in office “leaks” were springing up everywhere. For a novice to the political realm this may have appeared to have been a new phenomenon; however, the banner headline from a San Diego Evening Tribune dated January 8, 1917 makes it clear that once again, Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr was spot-on. How do we know? They put it in print:

Announcing: Catalog #311 (for October, 2021) is now available…

October 1, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

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Catalog 311 (for October) is now available. This latest offering of authentic newspapers is comprised of more than 350 new items, a selection which includes: the Articles of Confederation, a nice account of Lincoln’s assassination, a graphic issue on the sinking of the Titanic, George Washington is elected President, Winslow Homer’s famous ‘Snap The Whip’, Washington crosses the Delaware, an issue almost entirely devoted to the Lincoln assassination (with a print of Booth), the first newspaper published in Alaska (with Seward’s speech to the citizens of Sitka), an issue with the iconic Uncle Sam print, a Civil War broadside, the famous Hamilton and Burr duel, the creation of the United States Marine Corps, nice content on Lewis & Clark, and more.

 

The following links are designed to help you explore this latest edition of our catalog:

 

Don’t forget about this month’s DISCOUNTED ISSUES.

The links above will redirect to the latest catalog in approx. 30 days,

upon which time it will update to the most recent catalog.

They put it in print, 2003 – “Horses with no names?”

September 23, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

Many recognize the names of the most famous racehorses of all time: Seattle Slue,  Man o’ War, American Pharaoh, and Citation to name a few – especially if they were featured in a major Hollywood Movie, but what about their sired offspring? Do we recognize their names? How do we even refer to them? Perhaps “Seattle Slue and his Crew”, “Man o’ War and his War Reenactors”, “American Pharaoh and his Royal Subjects”, and/or “Citation and Prized Awards” would be appropriate? While all of these ideas ended up on the drawing room floor, one did make the cut. Thanks to his jockey’s restaurant, we have “Seabiscuit and his Little Biscuits”. How do we know? In the July 10, 2003 issue of the Los Angeles Times, they put it in print.

While none of Seabiscuit’s foals grew up to become famous in and of themselves, the restaurant he inspired is still in business.

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Update 9/28/2021, compliments of K.W. from Illinois…

A Thankful Heart from the Mouth of Babes…

September 20, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

Sometimes an image perfectly captures an emotion or a moment in time. Sometimes that moment is in the present but sometimes it won’t be noticed for decades. Recently, as I was putting together issues for one of our collectors, I came across an image on the front of a Harper’s Weekly dated January 4, 1902 which was that perfect snapshot. Our culture seems to have gotten murky and a bit hard to decipher at times., but on the front of the photo of a little boy captured the simplicity of his life. He was thankful for a man who had sacrificed greatly to make his life better. Perhaps, as a way to cut through the muck and mire of our time, a thankful heart is just what our culture… what we… what I need.

It All Depends On Your Paradigm…

September 6, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

Recently, while in Cancun, Mexico I was struck by a small yet complicating life perceptive… one man’s villain may very well be another man’s hero. Here at Rare Newspapers, we see varying sides of news stories on a daily basis… from American Revolutionaries vs. the British perspective to The Confederate troops vs. The Union soldiers. This day, however, as I stood in the Mexican sun, talking history with a young man who was the age of my children, I realized there was a new paradigm I had not considered. As he questioned what I did back in the states, his eyes lit up as he asked if we had any issues covering Pancho Villa. I quickly responded, “Oh, I’m sure we do. Let me check and I will get back to you.” Later as I scrolled through our inventory, I realized I would be hard pressed to find an issue that would excite him since the American perspective of this controversial figure was very different from my new Mexican friend’s view. I determined to find something to show him and finally settled on a rather benign Harper’s Weekly image without a splashy headline. He seemed pleased enough. My take away was a reminder to analyze my own heroes more carefully and to be sensitive to other people’s paradigms. There may only be one truth however, our paradigm can make it hard to distinguish at times.

Announcing: Catalog #310 (for September, 2021) is now available…

September 3, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

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Catalog 310 (for September) is now available. This latest offering of authentic newspapers is comprised of more than 300 new items, a selection which includes: the “Handshake of the Century” (between Jackie Robinson & George Shuba), Edmund Burke’s historic: On American Taxation… First Continental Congress’ appeal, Nice front page reporting on the Custer Massacre, Progressive “Bull Moose” Party is founded in 1912, New York City’s Graffiti artists, “The North Star” becomes “Frederick Douglass’ Paper”, the first convention of clubs: the birth of organized baseball, Lincoln steps upon the national stage… The Cooper Union speech, Synagogues hold memorial services… with much on the assassination & funeral of Lincoln, Extremely early mention of George Washington… French & Indian War, the full text of the Louisiana Purchase, the formation of the Mormon Church, the first full-fledged Broadway musical, and more, and more.

 

The following links are designed to help you explore this latest edition of our catalog:

 

Don’t forget about this month’s DISCOUNTED ISSUES.

The links above will redirect to the latest catalog in approx. 30 days,

upon which time it will update to the most recent catalog.

A Federal Government by Careful Design…

August 23, 2021 by · 2 Comments 

Anyone who studies the founding of our country and has peeked beneath the surface of how our Founding Fathers structured the United States of America’s Federal Government, must stand in awe of the delicate intricacies and broad sweeping stabilities the Founders instituted to keep us balanced. As a lover of American History, I am delighted when I find individual examples of their well oiled machine at work… when I see branches of our government “gird their loins” and bravely step into the role they were given. Such an incident occurred on June 2, 1952 when the Supreme Court decided Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co vs. Sawyer, also commonly referred to as the Steel Seizure Case or the Youngstown Steel case.
“[This] was a landmark United States Supreme Court decision that limited the power of the President of the United States to seize private property. The case served as a check on the most far-reaching claims of executive power at the time and signaled the Court’s increased willingness to intervene in political questions.
In the midst of the Korean War, the United Steel Workers of America threatened a strike, for higher wages, against the major steel producers in the United States. As President Harry S. Truman believed that a strike of any length would cause severe dislocations for defense contractors, Truman seized control of steel production facilities, keeping the current operating management of the companies in place to run the plants under federal direction. Though the steelworkers supported the move, the steel companies launched a legal challenge to the seizure on the grounds that the president lacked the power to seize private property without express authorization from Congress. “ (Wikipedia)
I wonder if sometimes our Founders smile to each other and say, “I love it when a plan comes together”. Here at RareNewspapers,we have great issues covering Supreme Court decisions. I find they make for a fascinating read.  May there always be brave warriors to take up the mantles our Founders designed.

Baby Steps… A journey of a thousand miles…

August 13, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

An old Chinese Proverb observes, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. My grandfather would have said, “You can eat an elephant: just one bite at a time”. Perhaps both are true when discussing America’s progression from slavery to the 1st black president. This journey has taken thousands of  steps – some quite noteworthy (ex., Brown v. the Board of Education), moved us forward by leaps and bounds – multiple steps at a time. Others, although relatively unknown (ex., The United States v. Cruikshank) set us back – steps in the wrong direction.  The latter was recently brought to my attention through a report in the March 28, 1876 issue of The New York Times which reported the Supreme Court’s decision in this case which is described by Wikipedia as: “a major blow to Federal efforts to protect the civil rights of African Americans”. Perhaps “2 steps forward, one step back” better describes this journey of a thousand steps – the first which began with the declaration: “We the People”. Thankfully, what started as a crawl, at some point, broke into a sprint. However, the trek continues.

Big things (sometimes) come in small packages…

August 2, 2021 by · Leave a Comment 

A few weeks ago I was searching for a newspaper covering the Brown vs. the Board of Education case. Such searches can take anywhere from 15-20 minutes to hours, and not all are successful, so jumping in to such an effort is almost always accompanied by an interesting blend of enthusiasm and anxiety. I began my hunt by printing a list of the monthly volumes of the various titles within our archives which spanned May 18, 1954 – the day after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision, and then headed off to our archives to search them one-by-one, starting at the top of the list. The New York Times? Sold. The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News? Both sold. After working through the volumes from the largest cities of the era I moved on to those from smaller locations: The Times-Picayune? Sold as well. The Springfield Union from Massachusetts? Again… sold. I was about to give up when I thought, “I might as well check The Fitchburg Sentinel (from where?)”. Without much hope, I pulled the volume and turned to the date. And in that moment my lesson was learned – sometimes even small city papers have GREAT content! The Fitchburg Sentinel from May 18, 1954  actually contained 2 articles covering the Brown vs. the Board of Education ruling. Fantastic!  If you have interest in this topic or other Supreme Court rulings, historic newspapers may be for you.

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