american studies

Image of the Week: Honest old Abe on the Stump

In honor of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, this week, we’ve chosen to showcase this satirical drawing of Abraham Lincoln after his nomination as a Republican presidential candidate in 1860. According to the summary provided by the Library of Congress, The artist contrasts Lincoln’s modest posture at the Illinois Republican state convention in […]

Image of the Week: “Banner of the Third United States Colored Troops”

During the American Civil War, the United States Army assembled regiments of African-American troops to help in the fight against the Confederacy. This week’s image shows a banner from one of these regiments, with the motto, “Rather Die Freeman Than Live To Be Slaves.” (NYPL – African American History Collection)  

Image of the Week: Willa Cather in a graduation cap and gown

Image of the Week: Willa Cather in a graduation cap and gown

In honor of all those graduating this year, this week’s commencement- themed image comes from the Willa Cather Archive at University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Willa Cather graduated from UNL in 1894, with a B.A. in English.

Image of the Week: Women Bowling

This week’s image from George Eastman House on Flickr Commons is a photo by American photographer William M. Vander Weyde (c. 1900). By the middle of the nineteenth century, ten-pin bowling had become a popular past-time thanks to the introduction of indoor lanes. Women, like the two depicted above, also enjoyed playing and even organized […]

Image of the Week: Valentine’s Day Delight and Vexation

This humorous pre-Civil War Valentine’s Day image comes from an 1855 issue of Harper’s Magazine. Titled “The Valentine: delight, vexation,” ┬áthe illustration depicts two extremes of emotions possible in observations of the holiday. For more images like this one, see the New York Public Library’s Mid-Madhattan Picture Collection of African-American life–1850s.

Image of the Week: The Winter Camp (Apsaroke)

This week’s wintry photo depicts the camp of people from the Apsaroke (or Crow) nation, and comes from the Edward S. Curtis collection at the Library of Congress.

Image of the Week: Central Park in Savannah, Georgia

So often, images of the American South from the nineteenth-century show a landscape littered with wounded and scarred by battle. This photograph, from the Library of Congress Prints and Photography Division, shows the more neutral scene of women and children by a fountain in Central Park, Savannah, Georgia in 1865. It’s fun to compare the […]

Image of the Week: Loco Foco Consternation

This print from the Library of Congress is a satirical take on the Glentworth scandal of 1840, in which a tobacco inspector plotted to sway a New York election for the Whigs by illegal means. Originally, the term, “Locofoco” referred to a radical faction of the Democratic Party who were strongly in favor of workers’ […]