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Rare broadside ad from the dawn of American rail travel

An early and very rare broadside advertisement promoting a Boston-Albany rail connection. The railroad craze came relatively early to Massachusetts. By the late 1820s a number of lines had been proposed, including the Boston & Worcester Railroad and a Western Railroad linking Worcester and Albany. Backers hoped the legislature would step in and fund the projects for the greater good. This […]

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The earliest image of police as pigs?

An unusual and very rare broadside depicting a Worcester, Massachusetts scandal and possibly featuring the earliest known image of police as pigs. The broadside depicts three policemen with pig’ ears and snouts storming into a couple’s bedroom. The astonished man stands before them in his nightshirt, presenting a document (perhaps a marriage certificate) for their inspection. […]

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Thematic map promoting Louisiana agriculture

This large, informative and surprisingly scarce broadside was an official document published by the Louisiana State Board of Agriculture and Immigration. The Board provided both regulation and technical support to the state’s agricultural sector while promoting its advantages to the rest of the country. For the decade beginning in 1896 its Commissioner was Jordan Gray Lee […]

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[Broadside] Manasseh Cutler et al. / Printed by S. Hall, State-Street, Boston, IN forming the annexed catalogue of diseases, particular pains have been taken to render it intelligible. Boston, Nov. 10, 1785.

A remarkable 18th-century American demographic and mortality survey

A remarkable and extremely rare broadside developed in 1785 by the American Academy of Arts & Sciences for a remarkably ambitious demographic and mortality survey of Massachusetts towns. Background The American Academy of Arts and Sciences was (and is) an honorary society chartered in 1780 by the Massachusetts General Court with the broad mission, “to […]

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Anonymous, VIOLENT STORM. Boston, October 15, 1804. Boston, [late October] 1804.

The Snow Hurricane of 1804

An unrecorded variant of an extremely rare broadside recounting the remarkable snow hurricane of 1804. The 1804 storm raged in Boston from Tuesday, October 9-Thursday, October 11, and observers were shocked by both its high winds and early-season snow: “The 1804 Snow hurricane was the first tropical cyclone in recorded history known to produce snowfall. An […]

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JOHNNY WITH HIS FRONT AND REAR GUARD. A Dialogue on the subject of the present War… [on sheet with:] BONA AND HIS LIFE GUARD. Father Abaddon… delivering a council of war to Napoleon… NP, ND, but American ca. 1808-1812.

A bizarre and spectacular broadside from the run-up to the War of 1812

A spectacular rarity from the run-up to the War of 1812, being two broadsides printed on a single sheet, one attacking Britain and the other Napoleon. Both surmounted with large, bizarre and crudely-powerful woodcuts. During these years American relations with Britain and France were fraught in the extreme.  Locked in conflict, the two European powers sought […]

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P. Russell / H.C. Southwick, THE LINES ON THIS SHEET, Were composed by P. RUSSELL, while lying in IRONS, in the Moro Castle, who has been prevented from obtaining a LIVELIHOOD in the ordinary pursuits of Life, by WOUNDS received in BATTLE. New York, [1808-1820?]

A sailor’s woeful tale on a striking illustrated broadside

A remarkable and unrecorded record of an American sailor’s adventures during the Napoleonic Wars. The broadside tells the tale of one P. Russell, a sailor from Merrimac, New Hampshire who-if his tale is to be believed-suffered an incredible run of bad luck while in the merchant service. Within the space of a few years he was […]

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H. Phelps, WORLD AT ONE VIEW. New York and Buffalo: Ensign & Thayer; Boston: Jos. A. Ward; and Cincinnati: Rufus Blanchard, 1847.

Humphrey Phelps offers the World at One View

An appealing, richly pictorial broadside map designed to impart to its American viewers, in a single, composite image, a sense of the wider world and by implication, their country’s place in it. World at One View is centered on a double-hemisphere world map, whose most interesting feature is a projected trans-continental railroad from New York […]

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