Three Opportunities to Learn More About Early African American Lives


Spring is springing, the bees are buzzing, and we are coming into the busy season here at AAS. Opportunity is knocking. This week AAS will be involved with two wonderful lectures on the lives of African Americans, so it’s a perfect time to tout the wide-range of material we have supporting the study ...

Historical Fare for Today, Tomorrow, and Thursday


Today you can check out a new issue of, an early American online journal AAS co-sponsors. If you want to understand today’s economic woes, you could do a lot worse than explore hard times in early America.  That’s the message in “Hard Times,” the latest edition of, guest edited by ...

“You Lie!”: Uncivil Discourse, Past and Present


If you thought the tension and incivility between political parties in America couldn't get any worse than it has been recently, then you haven't spent enough time with nineteenth century political cartoons. Today I don't think you could get away with publishing an image like "The Philosophic Cock" (in the new fully illustrated online inventory ...

Mark Your Calendars for Adopt-a-Book on Tues., March 30th


Some of the American Antiquarian Society's collection materials have been on our shelves for almost 200 years, but other items are "new" antiquities. New, that is, in the way that hand-me-downs from your older sister are new. They are new to us even if they have existed for hundreds of years elsewhere. The AAS curators ...

AAS Summer Seminar in the History of the Book


What do we think about when we think about the history of the book in the U.S. South (for those of us prone to think about such things, that is)? It is received wisdom that the South was much less industrialized than the North in the first half of the nineteenth century. And, if print ...

UPDATE: Ezra Greenspan’s Lecture Rescheduled

William Wells Brown: A Reader

It's a good news / bad news situation. For those of you who were not going to be able to attend Ezra Greenspan's lecture tonight, the good news is his talk on "Researching and Writing African American Biography: The Life of William Wells Brown" has been postponed to Thursday, April 22.  And for those who were ...

Mark Your Calendars for a Week from Today

William Wells Brown: A ReaderWilliam Wells Brown: A Reader

Thursday, February 25 – 7:30 p.m. at the American Antiquarian Society
Researching and Writing African American Biography: The Life of William Wells Brown
by Ezra Greenspan

William Wells Brown: A Reader Prof. Greenspan’s illustrated talk combines two stories: a narrative of the life of the most prolific and pioneering African American writer of the nineteenth century, and an account of a biographer’s journey to present that life to a twenty-first-century public.

From Cheap-Jacks to Scrooge McDuck

In Cheap We Trust

Recent economic events have raised the profile of cheapness, which makes this Tuesday evening's free public lecture at AAS a particularly timely event.  On Tuesday, Nov. 17, at 7:30pm Lauren Weber will be discussing the value of thriftiness in American history in a talk titled: "From Cheap-Jacks to Scrooge McDuck: A Brief History of Cheapness and Thrift in America."  By ...

Are your bookshelves looking bare?

Happy weekend, everyone!  Hope you all have had a chance to crash out on the couch and luxuriate in the do-nothing vibe. Should the time come when you decide to do something more drastic with your weekend, here's a last-minute but heartfelt invitation to join us at the acclaimed Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair ...

Historical reenactment: John Brown lives again in Thoreau’s Words

Radaker As Thoreau

This one's for the history geeks among us (and I include myself in this): You will not want to miss a truly unique historical reenactment taking place tomorrow night Defending John Brown: Henry David Thoreau and Worcester's Reform Tradition on Tuesday, November 3, 2009 at 7:30 p.m. at Mechanics' Hall, Main Street, Worcester.Witness Henry David ...

Baron Lecture Thursday Night


AAS invites you to join us in Antiquarian Hall at 7:30pm on Thursday, October 22nd for the 6th Annual Baron Lecture.  William W. Freehling, the Singletary Professor of the Humanities Emeritus at the University of Kentucky and Senior Fellow at the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, will be discussing his 1965 work Prelude to Civil ...