Sandusky, OH: Published under the supervision of the Fire Lands Historical Society by H.D. Cooke & Co., 1858. First Edition. 48 pp, in original sewn wrappers. Moderate foxing and staining throughout, especially to the last 10 pp. Good. First issue (June 1858) of this periodical dedicated to preserving the history of the western part of the Connecticut Western Reserve (i.e., north central Ohio). The area was known as both the "Sufferers' Lands" and the "Fire Lands" (or "Firelands") because resale of the land was intended as financial restitution for residents of the Connecticut towns of Danbury, Fairfield, Greenwich, Groton, New Haven, New London, Norwalk, and Ridgefield, where many homes had been burned by British forces in 1779 and 1781. By the mid 1850s, the ranks of the early settlers of the region were thinning, and those who remained decided to organize a society to preserve the heritage of the pioneers before it was too late. One of the first actions of the new society, which was officially formed in 1857, was to create a journal to publish the histories of the early settlements and their citizens. This first issue includes the Historical Society's constitutions, speeches on the need for and establishment of the Society, memoirs of the townships of Norwalk, Peru, and Groton, and details of the forthcoming issue, with a plea for subscribers. The latter was evidently a success, as the journal was published for several decades.
List 14: Americana
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Casper, WY: Inland Oil Index, 1926. First Edition. 4.75 x 7.5 inches, 106 pp., printed wrappers. Minor soiling and wear to front cover; very good. "Volume I" of what was presumably intended to be an annual, but we find no evidence of additional volumes having been issued. As the publisher proclaims on the first page, "This book is a gusher of information." It provides an alphabetical listing of more than 750 oil and gas producing companies, refineries, natural gas plants, marketing companies, supply houses, carbon black works, brokerage firms, etc. Each listing includes the company name and address(es), amount of capital authorized and issued, par value, state of incorporation, officers, and locations of principal properties. The directory is preceded by statistical tables, and there are ads throughout for everything from oil camp supplies to investment bankers.
Monte Ne, AR: Ozark Trails Association, 1919. 10 x 4.25 inches, 111 pp, with folding map tipped in at front; numerous photographic illustrations and full-page maps. Pictorial wrappers. Moderate cover wear, ink stamp of the Ozarks Realty Company of Thayer, Missouri, on several pages; very good. A wonderful early auto travel guide for this part of the country, written both to promote the existing road network and to encourage communities to invest more in road construction -- a time when it was still necessary to remind people that travel by roads "brings tourists, homeseekers, and investors [and] makes land saleable at a better price." The first few pages lay out the principles and by-laws of the Ozark Trails Association. In short, they saw their aim as promoting the public good by advocating for roads as "avenues of inter-communication and exchange of products." The remainder is divided into sections by route, each with a map followed by short descriptions (population, types of businesses and industries, tourist attractions) and photos of the towns it passes through. One section, for example, describes the 690-mile route from Lawton, Oklahoma to El Paso, Texas, and includes information on the Texas towns of Childress, Tell, Northfield, Matador, Lockney, Estelline, Turkey, Quitaque, Plainview, Hale Center, and Littlefield, as well as Roswell, Tularosa, and Almagordo, New Mexico. Dozens of other small towns in Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas are also described.
Philadelphia: George W. Jacobs, . First Edition. 7.5 x 5 in., 97 pp, with three illustrations from photographs, in original pictorial cloth. Light scuffing to corners and spine ends, pale stain to frontis (not affecting illustration), previous owners' names on front endpapers. Very good. In 1902, the United States depended on anthracite or “hard coal” for domestic heating. Anthracite coal miners in Pennsylvania went on strike on May 12, demanding higher wages, a shorter workday, and recognition of their union, the United Mine Workers of America. As the strike dragged on over several months, public anxiety about fuel shortages led President Roosevelt to take the unprecedented action of stepping in to bring about a resolution. On October 3, 1902, he met with presidents of the mine-owning railroads and union leaders. The owners refused to enter into negotiations with the union, and the conference disbanded without resolving the crisis. Roosevelt then formed a commission to investigate the strike. Secretary of War Elihu Root and banker J. P. Morgan convinced railroad leaders to abide by the findings of the presidentially appointed commission. The union also accepted the commission and, on October 20, voted to end the strike. In March 1903, the anthracite-coal commission recommended increasing miners' pay by ten percent (one half of their demand) and reducing the working day from ten to nine hours. Stewart Culin was a private in the Second Troop, Philadelphia City Cavalry, which was sent in August 1902 to maintain peace and order in Carbon County, where the strike was centered. He later became an important ethnographer, and his considered narrative and analysis of the strike reflects the eye of a keen observer.
Philadelphia: R. Rae & Co., 1856. 19 pp, in original pink printed wrappers, with two folding maps ("Map of the Halsey Estate" and "Map Showing the Connections of the McKean Coal Field with the Great Markets of Central and Western New York, and Lakes Erie & Ontario") and a profile ("Cross Section of the Coal, Iron, and Limestone Strata upon the Halsey Estate"), each of which is hand-colored. Front wrapper has a clean slice from a sharp object, rear wrapper has four similar cuts and some small contemporary doodles. Title page--with text identical to that on the front wrapper--is lacking. Good. A rare promotional piece for a resource-rich 5000-acre estate in north central Pennsylvania. The text lauds the land's natural beauty, fertile soil, abundant timber, and even the unsurpassed "purity and salubrity of its air, but the primary focus its coal-producing potential and suitability for investment. Many pages are devoted to the reports of various geologists, all pointing to the conclusion that "there is no coal field in Pennsylvania more deserving of attention than this one, its proximity to the lakes, its location above the water, and its horizontal position admits of it being mined with the greatest facility and at the most reasonable expense, and if the shales and cannel coal in the interior of the basin should confirm the theories of geologists, respecting the existence of a large amount of lubricating oils and volatile matter contained in them, the value of this coal basin is beyond all computation." A final section focuses on markets for coal and relevant transportation networks, and reminds the reader that "where coal is, there wealth attends." One copy located in OCLC (State Library of Pennsylvania).
1910. Typed letter signed "J.W. Crawford, Capt Jack" in ink, underneath which is an additional autograph note signed "Jack" in pencil. On a single sheet of Crawford's letterhead, which is illustrated with his portrait and proclaims him "the most versatile and unique historical character on earth." Several short tears at the margins, a bit rumpled; good. Crawford was a scout and journalist during the Indian Wars and later a lecturer, poet, storyteller, gold miner, and one of the most popular American performers of the late nineteenth century. He writes to tell Hornaday (conservationist and Director of the Bronx Zoo) that he is sending all members of the Camp Fire Club an "autographed souvenir" and a circular--a copy of which is enclosed for Hornaday--that includes testimonials to his ability as an entertainer from Hornaday and others. The circular, a double-sided handbill measuring 6 x 9.5 inches and titled "The Poet Scout," is included with this letter, but has significant water damage to the bottom two inches, as well as some short tears. The autograph note at the bottom of the letter reports that Crawford "will talk to probably 2500 young and old at Father Donelon's Big Hall" and that "several of the leading priests are interested in my work."
Autograph letter in a beautiful hand, on Ross' pictorial letterhead. Hutto, Texas, 1914. 8.5 x 11 inches, framed with clear glass on verso so entire letter can be read. Very good. Born in Ohio in 1867, Grant P. Ross moved to Texas in 1879, when his father obtained a homestead in Hutto and also became the town’s postmaster. Prior to becoming an entertainer, Ross earned a living through his penmanship skills, teaching at a business school in Austin and working as a show card writer (i.e., maker of handwritten signs for store displays). In this letter, addressed to an old friend he has not seen for many years, he says he was “a wonderful penman when I quit it and went into the show business.” That transition occurred in 1907, when he got his first job as a circus clown. Over the years he worked for Sun Bros. Circus, John Robinson’s Circus, Gentry Bros., and Wheeler Bros., traveling extensively, but returning to his farm in Hutto in the winters. He performed under the name of Bill Farmer (as noted on his letterhead, and apparently invented new routines and produced clown shows as well as appearing in them. This letterhead advertises his “cartoons and novelty blackboard penmanship act,” as well as his “dancing, monologue, and comedy wire act.” Ross’s letter, addressed to R. L. Ziller of Austin, recounts all the traveling he has done since entering show business: “I have been in Mexico twice, Cuba once, Canada four times, Honolulu twice, Fiji Islands once, Australia once, Over most of the United States quite a number of times.” He also report that “Politically I am a Socialist Labor Party man. Religiously I am a Theosophist.” He asks Ziller to write back with his own news and signs off “Yours truly, Grant Ross. Hutto, Texas. Capitol of the world, garden spot of the earth.”.
[Washington, D.C.]: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1970. Broadside/Poster 14 x 18 inches, printed on cardboard. Moderate rubbing and abrasion, some creasing to bottom corner, stamp of the Minneapolis office of the Small Business Station at lower right. Good. A (surprisingly) unrecorded poster published by the U.S. Government Printing Office, urging “Mr. Small Businessman” to take advantage of assistance offered by the Small Business Administration. The SBA was founded in 1953 to counsel, assist, and protect the interests of small businesses. There were various expansions of and changes to its mission and programs over the succeeding decades. The only thing we are aware of that occurred in 1970 (and thus might have been the reason this poster was produced) was the establishment of the agency’s Surety Bond Guarantee Program, which increased the availability of loans to smaller concerns that otherwise might not have qualified. It is also possible it was produced in conjunction with the SBA-sponsored, annual “National Small Business Week,” which at least in some years included a poster contest. That said, we found no record of this poster – nor of any other SBA publicity poster – in OCLC or the Library of Congress.
[Las Vegas, NM]: Mining World. Supplement to Mining World. Undated, but ca. 1882. Newsprint bifolium, 12.25 x 8.75 inches. Old folding creases, some splits at folds, soiling to page 4; good. An impressive amount of details is crammed into these four pages, in which Mills offers "immense quantities of land, in large and small tracts, at low prices, in quality ranging from inferior to such as cannot be surpassed." Properties are offered ten states and in Mexico, with Texas accounting for the greatest number (23). There, land is available from $1.25 to $10 per acre, with the high end being "a splendid ranch, containing twenty-two thousand acres of very rich land, eight hundred acres cleared...situated eighteen miles west of Tyler, three miles from the railroad, on the Nueces River." Properties are offered in Presidio, Haskell, Cameron, Nueces, Frio, Wood, Howard, Martin, Hidalgo, Swisher, Crockett, and Pecos Counties, and each listing provides information about features such as suitability for livestock, available water resources, proximity to roads and railroads, and price. Alabama also offers a large number of properties, many of which feature timber, mineral ores, fruit trees, fertile soil, and existing dwellings. The other states represented are New Mexico, Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee, Kentucky. West Virginia, Virginia, and Florida (where one could buy a 56-acre orange grove with 2,500 fruit-bearing trees for $22,000). The industrious Mr. Mills also offers 14 properties in Mexico; copper, sulphur, and silver mines and claims; ten thousand head of cattle; and a complete woolen mill (engine, boiler, pumps, carding machines, looms, spinning jacks) available for shipment by rail to your location.
Seattle, Wash. Seattle Union Record Publishing Company, . First Edition. 63 pp, in original stapled wrappers. Paper tanned and somewhat brittle, some chipping and a closed tear mended verso front wrapper, else very good. The Seattle General Strike was a five-day work stoppage by more than 65,000 workers in a city of 315,000. Twenty-five thousand union members (AFL and IWW members and others) joined 35,000 shipyard workers already on strike. Much of the remaining work force stayed home as stores closed and streetcars stopped running. The strike "led off a tumultuous era of post-World War I labor conflict that saw massive strikes shut down the nation's steel, coal, and other industries and threaten civil unrest in a dozen cities" (source: University of Washington Civil Rights & Labor History Consortium). The Seattle Union Record was labor-union owned, and this pamphlet provides sympathetic examination of the causes, process, and outcome of the strike.
One-page circular, 8 x 10 inches. Horizontal folding crease, minor chipping; very good. William E. Chanlder was a New Hampshire attorney who served as U.S. Secretary of the Navy under Chester Arthur and United States Senator from 1887-1901. This circular publishes his letter dated August 10, 1904 to James Wilson, Secretary of Agriculture, regarding the future of a herd of 175 bison living in Corbin Park -- a private, 24,000-acre preserve in New Hampshire owned by the Blue Mountain Forest Association (the Corbin family's corporation). Chandler, a trustee of the Association, notes the endangered state of the bison as well as the expense in maintaining the herd and asks the federal government to act to preserve the herd permanently -- either by purchase and relocation to Yellowstone National Park or by other means, for "unless the government adopts careful measures for such preservation, the race of buffalo will become extinct." Not recorded in OCLC.
Good. Recruiting poster for the Liberty Belles, western Pennsylvania's WAF (Women in the Air Force) program. 11 x 14 inches, printed on cardstock in blue, yellow and black. Some soiling, chip to lower left margin, organizational chart drawn by hand in pencil on back. Fifty "girls" from the region were to go through training together. According to a contemporary newspaper article, "As a WAF, ladies who proudly wear the Air Force Blues, you may receive training in one of the following career fields: radar, radio, administration, flight stewardess, medical, security, and many others. During your Air Force Indoctrination Training all WAFs receive a course in personal grooming. Courses like these contribute to the famous WAF poise and bearing." Circa 1957.
New Haven, CT: Civic Federation of New Haven, 1915. First Edition. Softcover. Very good. 6 x 9 in.,39 pp, in original stapled wrappers, with a double-page "Map Showing Girl Delinquency Areas in the City of New Haven, Conn." Two names in pencil on front wrapper, some handling wear; very good. Number 15 in the series Documents of the Civic Federation of New Haven, produced by their Committee on Social and Industrial Conditions. The study--which was based on a review of seven years of police and court records as well as "mental examinations" of girls and interviews with teachers, employers, police, doctors, and others--investigated causal factors in "girl delinquency" (defined as any illegal activity by a girl aged 7-21) and the handling of cases by the court system. Causes identified include lack of supervision at home and in the community (especially in dark movie theaters), access to alcohol at dance halls and cafes, and the "influence of a small proportion of the students at the University" who patronize the "girls walking up and down and standing on corners until late every night." The report concludes with detailed recommendations for improvement, including changing in the attitude of the legal system toward the girls (focusing on rehabilitation rather than punishment), more careful selection of and higher pay for probation officers, improved record-keeping, improved coordination with outside agencies, and creation of a "thoroughly modern and up-to-date detention home" for girls and women.
Brooklyn, NY: Published by the Author, 1896. 4.75 x 6.5 inches, pp 47 +  (ads). Original red cardstock wrappers printed in gold. Spine rubbed where previously covered in clear tape; else very good. Eleanor Kirk was the pen name of writer and women's rights advocate Eleanor Maria Esterbrook Ames (1831-1908). She was a regular contributor to The Revolution (the newspaper published by Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton), wrote weekly columns that were syndicated in as many as 150 newspapers, authored guides to assist other women in securing paid writing jobs, and published her own monthly periodical called Eleanor Kirk's Idea. When she was in her sixties, she developed a strong interest in esoteric religious ideas, including astrology and the New Thought movement. This book was her attempt to set out basic principles of "mental healing" -- the belief that the mind, when properly focused, can bring about both spiritual and physical health. During this same time period, she also published The Influence of the Zodiac Upon Human Life (1894), Perpetual Youth (1895), and The Prevention and Cure of Old Age (1899). We located only two institutional holdings of this item, both of an 1899 edition.
Small album containing 13 professional photographs of World War I homecoming festivities. The photos measure 3.25 x 5.25 inches and are mounted one to a page, rectos only. Eleven are signed in the negative by photographer Harry Wendell Richardson and show scenes in Newport, Vermont. Some are dated 6/3/19. The final two images are hand-colored and not credited. They are also homecoming photos, but based on the large size of both the buildings and the parade shown, we suspect these were taken in a different location. The Newport photos show many different buildings festooned with patriotic bunting, a marching band, soldiers parading down the main street with onlookers lining the sidewalks, and two speakers, one of whom is identified as Brigadier General Draper. The final two images show a massive crowd lining flag-bedecked streets as a parade goes by -- with a marching band in one image and a large group of Red Cross nurses in the other. A lovely collection of patriotic images.
War Council of the American Red Cross, 1918. 13.75 x 20.75 inches, printed in black and red. Creasing and general handling wear, edges reinforced with paper tape on the verso. Good. Prior to World War I, the American Red Cross was a small organization, still in the process of developing its programs and identity. The War spurred a significant period of growth for the organization, transforming it into a major national humanitarian organization by the end of 1918. This poster was published in 1918 by the War Council of the Red Cross, a short-lived special unit created by President Wilson in 1917 for the specific purpose of directing the organization’s war effort. It provided the American public with detailed information regarding the extent and cost of various Red Cross programs in France aimed at refugee relief, rebuilding, and hospital construction for the treatment and prevention of tuberculosis. We found no listing for an original of this poster in OCLC and none in commerce, but note copies at the Smithsonian, Metropolitan Museum of Art, National World War I Museum, Hoover Institution, and Imperial War Museum.
[Cheyenne, WY]: Teschemacher & DeBillier Cattle Co., . 6 pp, in original sewn wrappers. Spine and rear wrapper stained, ca. 1.5 x 4.5-inch section cut from front wrapper, contemporary manuscript computations throughout. Good. The Teschemacher & DeBillier Cattle Company was founded by Hubert Englebricht Teschemacher (1856-1907) and Frederick Ogden de Billier (1857-1935) in 1882 in Platte County, Wyoming. Both men were recent Harvard graduates, and Theodore Roosevelt was among their early investors. This statement prepared for shareholders provided a detailed breakdown of the compay's assets, describing the types and numbers of cattle and horses (total values $483,750 and $16,000, respectively), listing each of the real estate holdings with individual valuations (total value $34,000), and giving a brief summary of the tools and equipment. Also recorded are the value of beef sold in the past season ($60,881), how that money was reinvested (in bulls and real estate), labor costs, and taxes. Not located in OCLC.