An absolutely bizarre death report from 1911…

September 21, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Mark Twain is credited with posing: ““Truth is stranger than fiction, but it is because Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities; Truth isn’t.” If a report our staff discovered on the back page of a Fitchburg Sentinel for October 28, 1911 is any indication… score one for Mr. Twain. View the photo below to see if you agree.

A September, 2017 stroll back thru time – 50, 100, 150, 200, & 250 years ago…

September 4, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

What news was reported in the month of September – 50, 100, 150, 200, and 250 years ago (1967, 1917, 1867, 1817, 1767)? Such a walk back through time via 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 links 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 stroll.
September:
1967 – 50 years ago
1917 – 100 years ago
1867 – 150 years ago
1817 – 200 years ago
1767 – 250 years ago
Wanting for more? Why not take a year-long gander at 1667, 1717, 1767, 1817, 1867, 1917, and/or 1967?

Announcing: Catalog #262 (for September, 2017) is now available…

September 1, 2017 by · 2 Comments 

Rare Newspapers’ monthly offering of collectible newspapers, Catalog 262, is now available. This latest collection of authentic newspapers is comprised of nearly 350 new items. Some of the noteworthy content includes:

• Newsbook dated 1548
• Boston newspaper with a report on the Battle of Bunker Hill
• A more rare edition of the Herald on Lincoln’s assassination
• Washington’s inaugural address
• Illustration shows the Lincoln assassination
• Confederate newspaper from Houston, Texas

To view the above key issues and a whole lot more, go to: Catalog 262

(The catalog links shown above will redirect to the latest catalog in approximately 30 days.)

The Day the Music Died? Mother Theresa dies… Princess Diana is laid to rest…

August 24, 2017 by · 2 Comments 

On February 3, 1959, Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper died in a plane crash shortly after takeoff, and inspired one of the most recognizable tunes of all time: American Pie (Bye, bye Miss American Pie), by Don Mclean – a song he says was inspired by his reaction to reading the account of the crash in the morning paper. Fast forward nearly 20 years to the morning paper for September 6, 1997, and one can only imagine the emotions evoked by the duel headlines: “The World Mourns Diana” and “Revered Mother Teresa Dies”. Two people – one young, one old… one living in abundance, one living in squalor… one with the soft skin of a new-born babe, one with wrinkles upon wrinkles… one incredibly rich, one overwhelmingly poor – yet both committed to making a difference in the lives of the needy… the infirm… the neglected… the destitute. In the blink of an eye, both passed into eternity, leaving a mantle just begging to be picked up by those whose lives they had touched.

What about you? What about me? Truth be told, we’re all just Candles in the Wind. What acts of kindness, goodness, and humble service are filling our days while our candles are still burning? Stirred emotions can be a salve for the soul if they lead to action. Have you picked up their mantel? Have I? Who among us is selflessly helping those who are unable to help themselves?

Yet another set of heart-challenging thoughts (questions) ran through my mind as my damp eyes leafed through the pages of The Arizona Republic (September 6, 1997), passed over the various images of Princess Di and Mother Teresa, absorbed the printed lyrics of The Candle in the Wind (by Elton John), and settled on the photo of the two, together, only months prior to their deaths:

What song does Mother Teresa get? Princess Di gets “A Candle in the Wind”, and the Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and the Big Bopper get “American Pie”, but what about Mother Teresa? Who sings for her? And the 2nd question…

If February 3, 1959 is The Day The Music Died, then what is September 6th (or 5th), 1997? I’d love to know your thoughts.

“Texas Made A Nation” was the result of Operation Longhorn…

August 17, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Occasionally an “odd-ball” newspaper comes into our inventory, and our “Lampasas Dispatch” is certainly one. With a dateline of “Juvember 33, 1969” (not a typo on our part) and a banner headline announcing: “TEXAS MADE A NATION” we knew this wasn’t a legitimate newspaper. The masthead also includes: “For Maneuver Purposes Only—This Publication Created for Operation Long Horn–Not Intended For General Distribution.” So with a bit of searching on the web we soon learned of the story behind this newspaper.

See this website for much more on “Operation Longhorn“. The site begins: “In the spring of 1952, as Cold War tensions heightened, Lampasas Countians’ worst fears seemingly materialized, as “enemy troops” stormed the area, “captured” Lampasas and declared martial law. The U.S. military simulation, dubbed “Operation Longhorn,” was just a test…One of the largest peacetime military exercises ever implemented in the United States, Operation Longhorn took place in March and April 1952, and cost an estimated $3.3 million“.

This is just a single sheet with the reverse being page 8 of the “Lampasas Dispatch” April 3, 1952, coinciding with the date of Operation Longhorn. A fascinating fictitious newspaper from a long-forgotten event in American history.

Ticktock, ticktock, ticktock, ticktock…

August 14, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

What do Grace Kelly, Gene Kelly, Lillian Gish, Ruby Keeler, Gergory Peck, Henry Fonda, Stanley Kubrick, Madeline Kahn, DeForest Kelley, Fay Wray, Michael Landon, Dalton Trumbo, Sal Mineo, Robert Mitchum, Anne Baxter, Rock Hudson, Orson Welles, Barbara Stanwyck, Ava Gardner, Greta Garbo, John Candy, Burt Lancaster, Anthony Perkins, Audrey Hepburn, Liberace, Cab Calloway, John Candy, Marlene Dietrich, Dean Martin, Orson Wells, Anne Baxter, Ava Gardner, William Holden, Ginger Rogers, Lana Turner, Gilda Radner, Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Cary Grant, Mary Pickford, Bette Davis, Natalie Wood, Robert Shaw, Alfred Hitchcock, Andy Kaufman, Jackie Gleason, Charlie Chaplin, Joan Crawford, John Belushi, Jimmy Stewart, and Steve McQueen all have in common? Answer: There was a time when they were each on top of the world – adored by millions, and thanks to the silver screen’s ability to capture them in their prime, they seemed as if they would live forever. However, truth be told, the clock strikes midnight for everyone – regardless of their fame.

Over the past few months this reality was brought home to the staff at Rare & Early Newspapers as we discovered the death reports of some of the most famous Hollywood celebrities of all time – nearly all within Los Angeles newspapers. As Mark Twain not-so-subtly revealed through Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol, and Frank Capra reinforced through the eyes of George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart – shown above) in It’s A Wonderful Life, sometimes a glimpse at the brevity of life can be a healing, re-purposing salve for the soul. With this in mind, please enjoy(?): Death Reports of the Hollywood Famous

They put it in print… aerial garage?

August 10, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Articles of the past century can bring up interesting changes in what words were used for various items, places, or events. An article on the Wright brothers from 1908 (The Omaha Daily Bee, Sept. 9, 1908) mentioned a curious term for what we commonly call a “hangar”, where airplanes are stored. The article reads in part: “…and on another trip flew over the ‘aerial garage’ where the aeroplane is housed…”. The quotation marks for “aerial garage” were the writer’s addition, as if the person did not know what else to call it, or perhaps the term “hangar” had yet to be commonly used. But “aerial garage would seem to be a more logical term! Wonder why it never caught on?

The photo below shows the full text of the article.

An August, 2017 stroll back thru time – 50, 100, 150, 200, & 250 years ago…

August 3, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

What news was reported in the month of August – 50, 100, 150, 200, and 250 years ago (1967, 1917, 1867, 1817, 1767)? Such a walk back through time via 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 links 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 stroll.
August:
1967 – 50 years ago
1917 – 100 years ago
1867 – 150 years ago
1817 – 200 years ago
1767 – 250 years ago
Wanting for more? Why not take a year-long gander at 1667, 1717, 1767, 1817, 1867, 1917, and/or 1967?

Announcing: Catalog #261 (for August, 2017) is now available…

August 2, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

Rare Newspapers’ monthly offering of collectible newspapers, Catalog 261, is now available. This latest collection of authentic newspapers is comprised of nearly 350 new items. Some of the noteworthy content includes:

• Phillis Wheatley letter in a 1774
• Deadwood newspaper with mention of Wild Bill Hickok
• New York Times reporting Lincoln’s assassination
• Newsbook dated 1609
• Quebec Gazette from 1775
• First “Confederate” newspaper to report Lincoln’s assassination

To view the above key issues and a whole lot more, go to: Catalog 261

(The catalog links shown above will redirect to the latest catalog in approximately 30 days.)

Some things actually do change…

July 10, 2017 by · Leave a Comment 

One of the things that struck me while discussing the American Declaration of Independence and Constitution with my children earlier this month was the insight of the American forefather’s demonstrated in their framing of the foundation of this new experiment in self-rule. While some might point to the flaws found within many of the founding documents, procedures, underlying beliefs, and early practices to poke holes in our current state of government, truth be told the seeds of change were sewn throughout the fabric of this new society – avenues which have allowed for peaceful and rightful adjustments to be made over time. Sure, there were times when peaceful change took a backseat, however, many changes have occurred through the prescribed method for making country-wide adjustments: the amendment process. This truth came to light recently when I came across a headline (Los Angeles Times, June 11, 1979) announcing a Supreme Court decision regarding the rights of the handicapped (see images). Was their prior decision regarding the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 correct? How about this related-decision? How were the rights of the handicapped perceived prior to the 1973 decision? Now? Sometimes the changes made over time are quite dramatic. At other times, the adjustments have as much to do with how we describe things, such as the 1990 Amendment which replaced all appearances of the word “handicapped” with “disabled.” Things really can and do change over time.

As a side note, I also happened to notice that on the same day, The Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal by Madalyn Murry O’Hair aimed at having the inscription, “In God We Trust” eliminated from all U. S. coins. Wikipedia notes: “”In God We Trust” as a national motto and on U.S. currency has been the subject of numerous unsuccessful lawsuits. The motto was first challenged in Aronow v. United States in 1970, but the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled: “It is quite obvious that the national motto and the slogan on coinage and currency ‘In God We Trust’ has nothing whatsoever to do with the establishment of religion. Its use is of patriotic or ceremonial character and bears no true resemblance to a governmental sponsorship of a religious exercise.” Yes, somethings do change, but others, at least for now, remain the same. However, thanks to the wisdom of those who have gone before us, “We, the People” have a given means for expressing our views and may continue to do so until those who wish to silence dissent rule the day.

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