Tag Archives: African Americans

Revisiting Rebellion: Nat Turner in the American Imagination

Revisiting Rebellion: Nat Turner in the American Imagination

AAS recently collaborated with the Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery to create our latest exhibition, Revisiting Rebellion: Nat Turner in the American Imagination. A man who has been immortalized as a hero and condemned as a charlatan, mourned as a victim and reviled as a traitor, Nat Turner lives in myriad formats and genres ...

Finding John Levy

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A couple of weeks ago, Claire Jones, an intern from Princeton University, posted about her project centered on Judaica at AAS. This is the next installment in her findings. From its cover, the book looked totally ordinary. I had picked the title—The Life and Adventures of John Levy—from my list of memoirs for a few reasons. First, if the ...

Meet AAS Fellow Linford Fisher

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Linford Fisher is associate professor of history at Brown University, where he studies and teaches the religious history of colonial America and the history of Indian and African slavery and servitude. His first book, The Indian Great Awakening: Religion and the Shaping of Native Cultures in Early America, was published by Oxford University Press in ...

Metadata Matters: “African American” in the News and in the North American Imprints Program

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This post was co-written by AAS Digital Humanities Curator/ACLS Fellow Molly O'Hagan Hardy and AAS Head of Cataloging Alan Degutis. The New York Times recently reported the “discover[y]” of the earliest known use of the term “African American” from almost fifty years earlier than previously thought. The Oxford English Dictionary attributed it to The Liberator in ...

Gen. Benjamin Butler and Shoo Fly Chewing Gum

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This past winter, while hunting in the stacks for a trade card for a reader, I spotted this intriguing advertisement for chewing gum.  As editor of the Society’s Instagram account, I had been participating in an event called #bugginout, which featured posts by libraries around the world focused on illustrations of anthropomorphic insects.  These posts ...

The Acquisitions Table: Belle of Baltimore

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Belle of Baltimore. T.W. Strong, [between 1843 and 1866] A minstrel songster known in only two other copies (and those are either a variant or defective copy). This copy of Belle of Baltimore is remarkable for its intact publisher’s green wrappers and illustrations. The seven woodcuts, all but one depicting African Americans, are located on the ...

Photography: Printers at Work

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Recently, AAS purchased two photographs depicting American newspaper printers, one on eBay and the other at a local auction in central Massachusetts.  These images capture working men posed in photographic studios, holding props and tools of the trade.  When viewed with two additional photographs already in the collection, these portraits capture the likenesses of people ...

The Acquisitions Table: Lessons in Dancing

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Dilettante [i.e. Edward W. Clay] Lessons in Dancing, Exemplified by Sketches from Real Life in the City of Philadelphia. Philadelphia: Published by R.H. Hobson, 1828. Only the second known copy of this title with eight delicately hand-colored plates of dancing couples mounted on stubs and sewn into printed tan paper wrappers with the imprint information. The ...

The Pay Off for a Curator’s Perseverance

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Last week, curator of children's literature Laura Wasowicz posted about finding a unique find in a dusty house. This week, curator of graphic arts Lauren Hewes talks about another tack curators more often have to take: "hard work and diligence." Recently, the Society’s curatorial staff was asked to blog about significant acquisitions and the process by ...

The Acquisitions Table: Juno on a Journey

Abbott, Jacob. Juno on a Journey.The Juno Stories.New York: Dodd & Mead, ca. 1870. Jacob Abbott’s Juno was among the first female African American protagonists of a children’s book series.  In this book, Juno is enlisted to take a little white boy named Georgie on a train journey by the boy’s father.  During this early fictional ...

Featured Fellow: Aston Gonzalez

Aston Gonzalez, Ph.D. Candidate in History, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Jay and Deborah Last Fellowship: "Kneeling and Fighting: African American Artists' Depiction of Black Humanity" My project at the American Antiquarian Society investigates how African American visual artists produced work that acted as counternarratives to the racist messages contained in popular literature, images printed in ...