I love paper. I can’t help it. From books, to magazines, to scraps of advertising – ephemera is an incredible look at life through time. It never ceases to amaze me, how far we’ve come, and in so many ways, how alike we are with those past. Ephemera gives a continual historical perspective into what moves us, what is notable to us, and what drives us ever forward.
I recently acquired an incredible lot of pre-Civil War newspapers. Dating as far back as 1806, this collection is a look at early American life. Issues from New York, Philadelphia, Boston and other early Eastern Seaboard towns and cities are the bulk of this collection. There are agricultural issues, political issues and lots and lots of information on early merchant life, advertising and some incredibly special looks at greater issues in early 19C American Life.
One of my favorite bits gleaned from this collection, was in The Daily Palladium, whose motto reads, emblazoned under a Liberty Eagle “Let it be impressed upon your minds- let it be instilled into the hearts of your children- that the Liberty of the Press is the Palladium of all your Rights.” Behind a front page of job calls, house sales, and advertisements for everything from Pease’s Hourhound Candy to 200 bbls. of Beach’s Flour- there is an article entitled The Domestic Slave Trade: Case of the Brig Creole which details a slave rebellion and take over of a ship bound for New Orleans with “a cargo of tobacco, one hundred and thirty-five slaves, and four or five passengers.”
In addition to the events of the mutiny, the article discusses the liberation of the slaves by British forces, and the outrage of Southern Press over the actions of the British. The article alone, is a captivating clue to issues underlying the Civil War which would commence 20 years after this newspaper was printed.
Each issue is a piece of American History, worth reading and treasuring. With issues starting at 160 years old and some up to 205 years old, it’s a joy to present these to you. Issues range from 1-2 double sided pages up to 10 or more pages. I have just bagged a large selection in acid-free archival clear bags. There are a few issues that will be priced between $10 – $25, but the lion’s share will be offered at just $10 each.
With the Holidays fast approaching, these would make exceptionally thoughtful gifts for the History lover in your life. All issues are in remarkable condition for their age, and should be opened, read, and enjoyed by you and your family. If the kids think life was so simple for us just a generation ago, imagine what they will think reading a paper from a time when radio, television didn’t exist.
Stop by soon to check out this amazing collection, and take home a piece of history to share.