Today 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!
Today I traveled back to August 5, 1914 by the way of The Omaha Daily Bee Extra. There I found the banner headline announcing “Great Britain and Germany to War”. For the past few months, things have been unsettled in Europe, however in just the past few days it had now escalated after Germany had invaded the neutral countries of Belgium and Luxembourg as they were advancing towards France causing Great Britain to join in. Still at this point, “Neutrality of the United States in the great European war was formally proclaimed today by President Wilson…”. However we know that did not hold true as we joined the war in 1917.
One of the most common questions our Rare Newspapers’ staff is asked is, “How do you ever get anything done? Don’t you get distracted by the interesting content within the issues?” The answer is an enthusiastic, “YES!” One of the most enjoyable aspects of our daily interaction with early newspapers are these very “distractions”. Hardly a day goes by where we aren’t fascinated by or engaged in conversation resulting from the content within the issues we find.
One such discussion (distraction) was recently inspired by an issue of the Omaha Daily Bee dated June 28, 1919, which originally caught our attention because of its dramatic WWI headline, “PEACE TREATY SIGNED”, with a corresponding subhead, “China Alone Refuses To Sign Covenant That Ends Greatest War in History”. However, what caused our “distraction” was the front page text (shown in the image) regarding the “World’s Ten Greatest Peace Treaties“. Although this issue is no longer available, it can be viewed at: http://www.rarenewspapers.com/view/570082?acl=781584385. Much has occurred since the early 20th century. We wonder what such a list might include if it were printed on the front page of a tomorrow’s newspaper?