Ludicrous advertising in the late 1800’s…

March 20, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Hofstra University maintains a Facebook page where staff from their special collections department can post interesting finds. We recently discovered the following which illustrates one of the collecting strands of the hobby: sensational (or absurd) advertising:

The City of Boston receives noteworthy journalism award…

March 9, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Blog_Guy_11_2012The following is a note we recently received from one of the collector friends of Rare & Early Newspapers:

Happy to report that the section “Boston Journalism Firsts” and other contents of the Boston Journalism Trail site were used to nominate Boston for the Historical Site in Journalism Award given by the American Society of Professional Journalists, the largest journalists organization in the United States. The organization gave its 2014 award to Boston, thus for the first time honoring a whole city for the totality of its contributions to journalism. The organization’s president is to present the city’s mayor with a memorial plaque to be placed in a public space in downtown Boston in 2015. Thanks for all your support over the years.

To view details:

http://www.spj.org/news.asp?REF=1260

http://www.emerson.edu/news-events/emerson-college-today/boston-recognized-journalism-history#.VL0ipnZ6_YI

They put it in print… George Washington called a quack…

February 10, 2015 by · Leave a Comment 

Newspaper reports from the “other side” always provide some fascinating reading, such as Confederate vs. Yankee accounts of Civil War battles, or Allied vs. Nazi reports of World War II battles.

The same is true of the Revolutionary War. The “Pennsylvania Ledger” was a Loyalist newspaper and they spared little in criticizing the American, or “rebel”cause as they called it, for freedom. The January 21, 1778 issue has a fascinating letter which heavily criticizes Washington’s letter to Congress of October 5, 1777 (see below or go to this issue for full details). In the letter Washington puts an admittedly positive spin on his tragic loss at the battle of Germantown, which gives this writer a cause to respond.

He begins: “Mr. Washington’s letter to Congress…is perhaps the most extravagant piece of Jesuitical quackery that has been exhibited during the present rebellion. This heroic epistle abounds in deception, and incongruous contradiction in the extremely; it is calculated to mislead…”. His treatment of Washington doesn’t get any nicer. “This military quack…” is his next reference to the American leader, and he takes on one of the more famous quotes from Washington’s letter: ” ‘Upon the whole, it may be said the day was rather unfortunate than injurious.’ what a delicate and nice distinction here is held forth!…Who can help laughing at such an heterogeneous jumble of inconsistencies. Mr. Washington & his confederates have gained immortal honour by being suddenly put to flight by his Majesty’s troops…”.

Reading from the Loyalist side offers a perspective not to be found in newspapers supporting of the cause of Independence. What a fascinating hobby!Blog-2-11-2015-Washington-Letter

Government in action… yet another proud moment…

September 19, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

At first blush, this issue appears to be exactly what one might expect from a Government sponsored publication. However, upon closer inspection of the lower right corner, we soon realize… this is exactly what one might expect from a government sponsored publication. Somewhere, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg are smiling. Please enjoy the cover of the April, 1944 issue of the U.S. Army-Navy Journal:Army & Navy Journal

The editor shows his bias…

July 26, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Editorials from the 19th century were often quite frank and not afraid to mince words, and perhaps the most scathing comments were found in newspapers during the Civil War years. The “Daily Examiner” newspaper from Richmond, Virginia, January 20, 1865, has an editorial which begins with some very biased words about Andrew Johnson:

News worthy of the headline… Which would you choose?

February 8, 2013 by · 1 Comment 

Selecting the news for a newspaper’s headline must be quite challenging at times, especially when there are multiple significant events clamoring for top billing. We recently came across a Leominster Daily Enterprise, MA, April 16, 1947, which had 5 noteworthy events to choose from:

*  Execution of Rudolf Hoess, Nazi commandant of Auschwitz… oversaw massacre of 2,000,000 Jews

*  Milton Reynolds breaks Howard Hughes around-the-world aviation record in his “Bombshell”

* Jackie Robinson breaks racial barrier… 1st regular season MLB game played by an African American

* Texas City disaster (350 killed)

* Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten (from Greece) become engaged, with photo

Which do you think grabbed the headline back in 1947?To find out if you made the right choice, go to:

1947 Headline

(see the 4th image)

What if the same events occurred today?  Would the editors make the same choice for tomorrow’s headline? We’d love to know your thoughts… and reasons.

Davy Crockett survived the Alamo?

May 16, 2009 by · 1 Comment 

crockettThe report shown appeared in the “Staunton Spectator” newspaper of Virginia, May 5, 1836. Accuracy in reporting the news certainly wasn’t any better back in 1836.  Have you ever found similar inaccurate reporting?

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