Surviving the Titanic: The Stories Behind the Story

No novelist would dare to picture such an array of beautiful climatic conditions—the rosy dawn, the morning star, the moon on the horizon, the sea stretching in level beauty to the skyline—and on this sea to place an ice-field like the Arctic regions and icebergs in numbers everywhere—white and turning pink and deadly cold,—and near them, rowing round the icebergs to avoid them, little boats coming suddenly out of the mid-ocean, with passengers rescued from the most wonderful ship the world has known. 

—Lawrence Beesley, The Loss of the S.S. Titanic (June 1912)

The Titanic. Source: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress).

Surviving the Titanic: The Stories Behind the Story

Just published — The Readex Report: April 2012

In our latest issue: The exonerated executioner of a Native American sorceress; profiling a polymathic chess master; using a local newspaper archive to uncover an American city's past; and unremembered inhumanity that sparked a world war.
Murder! Or the Remarkable Trial of Tommy Jemmy, 19th-Century Seneca Witch-Hunter and Defender of Indian Sovereignty By Matthew Dennis, Professor of History and Environmental Studies, University of Oregon I never read murder and mayhem stories in the newspaper.  Such sensationalist accounts have been a mainstay of the U.S. popular press since it was invented in the early American republic, and they remain a prominent feature today.  But the tawdry details of homicidal doings, breathlessly recounted, hold little appeal for me.  And yet a few years ago one such story caught my eye and drew me in, sending me on my own investigative journey. (read article)
Just published — The Readex Report: April 2012

The Titanic and Her Passengers: Using America’s Historical Newspapers to Uncover Tales of Tragedy and Love

Thousands of ships over centuries have lined the ocean floor, but even 100 years after it sank, the Titanic still fascinates. James Cameron’s 1997 critically acclaimed "Titanic"—the second bestselling film in U.S. history—was re-released this month in 3-D. The Titanic has also been the subject of several TV documentaries retelling and exploring the disaster. In its own time, no news event was more covered in exacting detail through the pages of the press. News of the Titanic’s shocking demise made front pages across the nation.

The Boston Journal (Source: America's Historical Newspapers)

The Titanic and Her Passengers: Using America’s Historical Newspapers to Uncover Tales of Tragedy and Love

Surgeon and Abolitionist James McCune Smith: An African American Pioneer

Dr. James McCune Smith. Source: New-York Historical Society

Surgeon and Abolitionist James McCune Smith: An African American Pioneer

Charles Dickens turns 200

This year marks the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens’ birth. America’s Historical Newspapers contains hundreds of contemporaneous articles about this genius of English literature, as well as reviews of his works and advertisements for his books. Here are a few samples, supplemented by the menu of a banquet held in his honor, found in American Broadsides and Ephemera.
Charles Dickens turns 200

Local Intelligence: Exploring the Past of My Adopted Hometown

Our Guest Blogger:

Barbara Shaffer, unofficial historian of Springfield, Massachusetts

From the online archive of the Springfield Republican and Union

Local Intelligence: Exploring the Past of My Adopted Hometown

Birth of a Star—Washington, D.C.’s Evening Star

The Evening Star Newspaper Buildings. Source: Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division

Birth of a Star—Washington, D.C.’s Evening Star

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