Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Building the Digital Lincoln website

In this bicentennial year of Abraham Lincoln's birth, historians continue to offer rich new insights into the life and times of the nation's 16th president. The September number of the Journal of American History is a special issue--"Abraham Lincoln at 200: History and Historiography," with a number of insightful essays.

In addition, the Journal of American History has partnered with the House Divided Project at Dickinson College, under the direction of Professor Matthew Pinsker to create a fascinating web resource titled "Building the Digital Lincoln."

According to the site, which features a variety of digital texts, dynamic maps, and visual data,

"This special resources site offers a snapshot of how historians and digital humanists have helped to build a new understanding of Abraham Lincoln with a series of innovative and powerful Web-based tools. Their contributions during the decade preceding the Lincoln bicentennial have significantly altered the landscape of Lincoln scholarship by widening and deepening access to a vast array of primary sources. The result has been a more finely detailed portrait of President Lincoln, his relationships, and his career’s most pivotal moments."

MARC records available for titles in Early American Imprints (Evans)

Thanks to the library's new e-loader, MARC records for individual titles in the online database Early American Imprints I (Evans Digital) are now available in the library's catalogs (SOCRATES and SearchWorks). For example, users can now discover Thaddeus Mason's 1793 work "A seleced [sic] catalogue of some of the most esteemed publications in the English language. Proper to form a social library: with an introduction upon the choice of books."

Records for Early American Imprints II (Shaw-Shoemaker) will be online in several weeks.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Southern Oral History Program interviews available online

The Southern Oral History Program, a division of the Center for the Study of the American South at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, has recently made over 500 oral history interviews available online. Topics include the Civil Rights Movement, Environmental Transformations, Southern Politics and Southern Women.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

New African-American historical newspapers online

The Stanford Libraries have recently acquired online access to three new historical African-American newspapers.

The Baltimore Afro-American (1893-1988) (ProQuest)

Next to the Chicago Defender (which Stanford already owns), The Baltimore Afro-American is arguably the most important newspaper available digitally in ProQuest’s new African American newspapers series, a part of their Historical Newspapers line. It is a full-text, full-image database that is key-word searchable. The Baltimore Afro-American (1893-1988) was the most widely circulated black newspaper on the Atlantic coast and has been highly influential throughout the nation. It was the first black newspaper to have correspondents reporting on World War II, foreign correspondents, and female sports correspondents. The paper's contributors have included writer Langston Hughes, intellectual J. Sunders Redding, artist Romare Beardon, and sports editor Sam Lacy.

The Atlanta Daily World (1931-2003)

Stanford has also acquired The Atlanta Daily World (1931-2003), also published in the ProQuest Historical Newspapers line. The Atlanta Daily World provides a critical view of African-American life in the 20th century South. Founded by W.A. Scott II, the paper sought to educate, inspire, uplift and promote the expression of the Southern black community. It includes first hand coverage of the infamous Scottsboro Case, as well as reviews of African American literature, such as Richard Wright’s Native Son. Importantly, it provides an African-American perspective on the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s and coverage of Atlanta’s own Martin Luther King, Jr. Its Southern perspective provides an important regional balance to the two African-American newspapers (in ProQuest’s Historical Newspapers line) that Stanford already owns (the Chicago Defender and the Baltimore Afro-American). Importantly too, it can be cross-searched with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, also in the ProQuest Historical Newspapers line.

The Christian Recorder(1877-1902), in African-American Newspapers: The 19th Century (Accessible Archives)

The Christian Recorder was (and remains) the official newspaper of the African-American Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States.

The Christian Recorder embodied secular as well as religious material, and included good coverage of the black regiments together with the major incidents of the Civil War. The four-page weekly contained such departments as Religious Intelligence, Domestic News, General Items, Foreign News, Obituaries, Marriages, Notices and Advertisements. It also included the normal complement of prose and poetry found in the newspapers of the day.

Stanford already owns earlier issues of The Christian Recorder, as a part of the Accessible Archives collection African American Newspapers: The 19th Century. These newly acquired years of The Christian Recorder detail the challenges faced by African-Americans in the South after the Compromise of 1877 and the end of Reconstruction through the early 20th century. The Accessible Archives interface allows for full-text searching (text has been re-keyed, as well as available through facsimile images). Advanced users may use field, proximity, and boosting searches along with the standard Boolean, wildcard, truncation and parenthesis searches.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Food History

At last year's AHA (American Historical Association) meeting, five sessions focused on the history of food, which the program noted "thus appears to be establishing itself as a major new subfield of historiography."

An excellent syllabus is available for a course on "American Food" being taught by Professor Elizabeth Engelhardt this fall in the American Studies department at the University of Texas at Austin. Food and foodways in the American South are often of particular interest; Jamene Brooks-Kieffer has posted an excellent research guide to sources for Southern foodways on the Kansas State University Libraries website.

My colleague Molly Molloy has created several wonderful research guides for PWR (Program in Writing and Rhetoric) classes dealing with food.

A number of libraries have digitized collections of historical cookbooks. The Michigan State University Library has created a wonderful site titled "Feeding America: The Historic American Cookbook Project" which contains digitized historical cookbooks from their collections.

The New York Public Library has a wonderful culinary history collection , as does the Virginia Tech University Library.

Special Collections here in Green Library has a number of historical cookbooks. To browse them, try a combined search in SOCRATES using "cookery" and restricting the "Library" field to Special Collections.

Finally, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America is a valuable reference source, available online and in print in the Information Center's reference collection.

Friday, September 18, 2009

New Microfilm Collections

The Stanford Libraries have recently acquired two new interesting microfilm collections of manuscript material dealing with 19th century American History:
The Horace Greeley Papers, 1831-1873 and the John Patterson Green Papers, 1869-1910.

An online guide to Greeley's papers may be found on the Primary Source Microfilm Scholarly Guides site (scroll down to the entry for Greeley's papers).

Green, a prominent Ohio African-American legislator often known as the "Father of Labor Day" has a helpful biographical sketch in the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Colonial State Papers available online

The Stanford Libraries have recently acquired an important database for historians of Colonial America and the early modern Atlantic World--Colonial State Papers.

From the publisher's description:

ProQuest’s Colonial State Papers provides researchers with two invaluable sources for the study of colonial American history—the manuscripts that make up the Colonial Papers in the UK National Archives, as well as the printed calendars that describe them.

The National Archives' collection 'CO 1' (full name - Privy Council and related bodies: America and West Indies, Colonial Papers) contains thousands of papers that were presented to the Privy Council and the Board of Trade between 1574-1757, and which relate to England's governance of, and activities in the American, Canadian and West Indian colonies. Colonial State Papers also includes the digitized Calendar of State Papers Colonial - an advanced bibliographic tool providing more than 45,000 records of bibliographic description, covering not only CO 1, but also documents from many other collections, all relating to the American colonies. Calendar of State Papers Colonial consists of bibliographic entries along with full transcriptions, extracts and abstracts, in fully keyed XML.

All documents have been reproduced as full color, high quality images, including a number of unique contemporary hand-drawn maps. Users can search and browse in variety of ways.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Americana; recent acquisitions--antiquarian and ephemera

Saunders, Charles Francis. With the Flowers and Trees in California. New York: McBride, Nast & Company, 1914.

Tallack, William and Wheat, Carl I. The California Overland Express, the longest stage-ride in the world. Los Angeles: Historical Society of Southern California, 1935.

Welsh, Charles, ed. Chauffeur Chaff, or, Automobilia: Anecdotes, Stories & Bon-mots: Also a History of the Evolution of the Automobile. Boston, MA: H.M. Caldwell Co, 1905.

Comstock, J. L. (John Lee), 1789-1858. A history of the precious metals: from the earliest periods to the present time ; with directions for testing their purity, and statements of their comparative value, estimated cost, and amount at different periods; together with an account of the products of various mines ; a history of the Anglo-Mexican mining companies, and speculations concerning the mineral wealth of California. Hartford : Belknap and Hamersley, 1849.

Franklin, Augustus. The American farrier: adapted for the convenience of the farmer, gentleman, and smith; being a sure guide to prevent and cure all maladies and distempers that are incident to horses, of what kind soever; with a variety of other valuable things relating to them: and also, for the diseases incident to cattle. Strasburg: Printed and sold by Brown & Bowman, 1803.

Commission on Interracial Cooperation. A practical approach to the race problem: Origin and work of the Commission on Interracial Cooperation. Atlanta, Ga.: Commission, 1939.

Haslam, Andrew J. Forty truths and other truths : an interesting publication on the life of a soldier in the Philippine Islands : also touching on the life and habits of the Tagalos. Manila: Philippine Pub. Co., 1900.

McCorkle, Samuel. Incident on the bark Columbia : being letters received & sent by Captain McCorkle and the crew of his whaler, 1860-1862. Cummington, Mass.: Cummington Press, c1941.

Spurr, Josiah Edward. Through the Yukon gold diggings; a narrative of personal travel, by Josiah Edward Spurr. Boston, Eastern Pub. Co., 1900.

Bramble, Charles A. Klondike; a manual for goldseekers. New York, R.F. Fenno & Co. [1897].

Champlain Society Publications online

For historians researching the history of exploration in North America, the publications of the Canadian Champlain Society comprise an excellent resource. Many of the Champlain Society's publications are available online through a digital collection co-sponsored by the University of Toronto Library.

According to the site,

"The collection contains eighty-three of the Champlain Society's most important volumes (over 41,000 printed pages) dealing with exploration and discovery over three centuries. It includes first-hand accounts of Samuel de Champlain's voyages in New France as well as the diary from Sir John Franklin's first land expedition to the Arctic, 1819-22."

19th century almanacs

Thanks to a recent generous donation, the library has added several scarce 19th century almanacs to our collections.

The Friend of peace almanac, No. 2. For the year of our Lord 1821...
Lebanon, Ohio: Printed by A. Van Fleet & Co, 1820.

The Illustrated Family Christian Almanac for the United States, 1850. New York, NY: American Tract Society, [1849].

The Buckeye Almanac for 1848...Dayton, Ohio: B.F. Ells, [1847].

Ayer's American Almanac [1865 and 1884]. Lowell, Mass.: J.C. Ayer & Co., [1864, 1883].

Wakefield's Western Farmers' almanac, 1884-1885. Bloomington, Illinois: C. Wakefield, [1883].

Dr. O. Phelps Brown's Shakespearian Annual Almanac, 1880. Jersey City, N.J.: [1879].

The Illustrated Family Medical Almanac for the United States...1853. Cincinnati, Ohio: John D. Park [1852].