Tagged History

Celebrate the Dog Days of Summer!

Phew, the summer is heating up! As we all try our best to deal with the rising temperatures in our area, don't forget that the Free Library is a great place to cool off. Check your neighborhood library's hours of…

Bloomsday is back!

The Rosenbach's annual Bloomsday festival is BACK on Delancey Place after a two-year hiatus. Join the celebration on Thursday, June 16 anytime between 11:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. What  is  Bloomsday? Bloomsday is the day…

Celebrating Juneteenth!

The Free Library is celebrating Juneteenth! Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration of the end of enslavement in the United States and a time when we come together to celebrate this monumental occasion across the country, within our…

Commemorating Immigrant Heritage Month This June

This June, the Free Library is celebrating Philadelphia’s immigrant communities! June is Immigrant Heritage Month , a time when we celebrate the beauty and strength of our city’s many immigrant communities. Philadelphia…

Dracula at 125

Written by Edward P. On May 26, 1897, visitors to bookshops in London found a new book, for just six shillings, published by Constable and Co., bound in a lurid yellow cloth cover with blood red letters announcing its strange…

Rosemary for Shakespeare

Written by Isabel S. April 23 marks the day that we traditionally celebrate William Shakespeare’s birth and deathday, though neither of those occasions are confirmed to have actually been on the 23rd. Shakespeare was baptized on…

Up Above: Thinking about the "Little Old Lady Tost Up in a Basket"

Just in time for spring cleaning, N. C. Wyeth's The Old Woman Tost Up in a Basket is back on display in Up Above: Thinking About the Skies in Parkway Central Library. Creating and researching an exhibition is always an…

The Quilts of Gee's Bend

History is found in the pages of a textbook—or so I thought! This February, celebrate Black History Month by learning more about the history of Black quilt makers! Do you know about the (Quilt) Pieces of Black History series…

Who Was the Saint of Valentine's Day?

Was there a saint of love? Despite myths surrounding the "real" Saint Valentine , this holiday likely owes its origins to Medieval English poet Chaucer . At a time of growing romance around ideas of forbidden courtly love, he…

Harriet Tubman’s Legacy

Araminta (Minty) Ross was born a slave in March 1821. As a free woman, she was reborn under the name of Harriet Tubman. As the conductor of the Underground Railroad, Harriet was named the Moses of her people. Harriet Tubman got the…

The Federal Writers' Project American Guides

Most of us are familiar with the artwork created by the Works Progress Administration: the striking photography, the murals in state buildings and post offices, the posters, and the public sculptures, but fewer are aware of the work…

A Continued Discussion on the Topics of Surrealism and Gender

Written by Lewis Shaw, who conducted extensive research in the Art Department as part of a Friends Select School Senior Internship Project. The following is a continuation of a previous blog post on the topics of Surrealism and Gender.…

Frenemies: The Strange Friendship of JFK and Richard Nixon

The 1960 presidential campaign was close, hard-fought, and left both sides feeling embittered. Kennedy’s final margin of victory was less than 115,000 votes out of nearly 70 million cast.  Nixon was convinced that the Kennedy…

More Than Stonewall: LGBTQ Historical Nonfiction

All October we'll be talking about LGBTQ History on the Free Library's blog! So far we've discussed LGBTQ Historical Young Adult Fiction and  LGBTQ History Told Through Comics and Graphic Novels . This week, we turn our…

Reopening the Book of the Dead: The Evil Dead 40th Anniversary

40 years ago on this day, October 15, 1981, a film debuted that not only scared audiences but would send shivers through Hollywood for years to come, serving as not only an artistic influence on future filmmakers but also a D.I.Y. guide…

LGBTQ History Told Through Comics and Graphic Novels

A panel from Hazel Newlevant's exposé of queer uprisings found within Be Gay, Do Comics!. All October we'll be talking about LGBTQ History on the Free Library's blog! Last week we discussed LGBTQ Historical Young…

Explore the New Deal’s Legacy Across Philadelphia

The New Deal, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s political experiment to pull the United States out of the Great Depression, created programs for relief for the unemployed and economic recovery and reform. Evidence of some of these…

We Were Always Here: LGBTQ Historical Young Adult Fiction

October is LGBTQ History Month ! A lot of straight and/or cisgender people like to treat gay people like we didn't exist until  Ellen Degeneres came out as a lesbian in 1997 ; and as if transgender people didn't exist until…

What Do You Know About Bollywood? | International Bollywood Day

September 24 is International Bollywood Day! So... what exactly is Bollywood? Depending on who you ask, each person defines it differently.  In the film My Name Is Khan , an Indian man embarks on a remarkable journey across America…

Move into Autumn with the Harvest Moon

Today, September 22, we welcome the equinox once again! On this day twice each year, the sun rests directly over the equator, so day and night are nearly equal in length all over the globe. In the Northern Hemisphere, the Autumn Equinox…

A Taste of African Heritage

Let's chat and learn about nutrition, and taste traditional African dishes together!  This program is presented by African Heritage and Health:  An Oldways Program from Einstein and Jefferson's A Better Start F.U.N.…

Military History Club

Join our monthy discussion group! We are commencing a discussion series centered on military conflicts. This month's discussion will focus on the Iran-Iraq War. December 22, 2022 | 11:00 a.m. | Heim Center Room 131/132 Central…

A Taste of African Heritage

Let's chat and learn about nutrition, and taste traditional African dishes together!  This program is presented by African Heritage and Health:  An Oldways Program from Einstein and Jefferson's A Better Start F.U.N.…

Community Film Screening

Come and see The New Black Panthers: A Modern Day Re-Imaging of Bobby Seale and Heuy Newton's Ten Point Program. This film was created by the seventh graders of Roosevelt Elementary School - Aniyahla, Ayrihanna, Eli, Ezra, Jasmine,…

Community Film Screening

Come and see The New Black Panthers: A Modern Day Re-Imaging of Bobby Seale and Heuy Newton's Ten Point Program. This film was created by the seventh graders of Roosevelt Elementary School - Aniyahla, Ayrihanna, Eli, Ezra, Jasmine,…

Alice Dunbar-Nelson

Free Library resources in support of the Rosenbach's Digital Exhibition: "I Am an American!" The Authorship and Activism of Alice Dunbar-Nelson

Freedom Train - Adults

Supplemental adult reading suggestions for the Rosenbach's Freedom Train exhibition, running July 1st, 2016 through November 1st, 2016.

Freedom Train - Teens

Supplemental teen reading suggestions for the Rosenbach's Freedom Train exhibition, running July 1st, 2016 through November 1st, 2016.

Freedom Train - Children

Supplemental children's reading suggestions for the Rosenbach's Freedom Train exhibition, running July 1st, 2016 through November 1st, 2016.

Presidents of the United States

Under the United States Constitution, the President of the United States is the head of state and head of government of the United States. As chief of the executive branch and face of the federal government as a whole, the presidency is…

Asians American History, Cultural Traditions, and Celebrations

History of different Asian ethnic groups in America and background on Asian cultural traditions and holidays.

U.S. Elections and Politics

The United States midterm general election will be held on Tuesday, November 6, 2018. In Pennsylvania, the ballot includes candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor, U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, the Pennsylvania State Senate,…

U.S. Congressional Serial Set (1817-1980)

The bound, sequentially numbered volumes of all the Reports, Documents, and Journals of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives constitutes a rich source of primary source material on all aspects of American history. Upon…

Slavery in America and the World: History, Culture, and Law

This HeinOnline collection brings together a multitude of essential legal materials on slavery in the U.S. and the English-speaking world. It includes nearly 2,000 titles, with every statute passed by every colony and state on slavery,…

Philadelphia Tribune (1912-2001)

Full access to the oldest continuously published daily Black newspaper in the United States.

Philadelphia Evening Telegraph

Philadelphia Evening Telegraph was a daily afternoon newspaper started on January 4, 1864. Search, browse, and read it online here.

HistoryMakers Digital Archive

The HistoryMakers Digital Archive is the nation's largest African American video oral history collection. It provides high-quality primary source content, with fully searchable transcripts, from thousands of people from a broad range of…

Historical Newspapers - Black Newspapers

Primary source material from ten historic Black newspapers, including the Chicago Defender, The Baltimore Afro-American, New York Amsterdam News, Pittsburgh Courier, Los Angeles Sentinel, Atlanta Daily World, and the Cleveland Call and Post

Gun Regulation and Legislation in America

This new HeinOnline collection brings together more than 550 titles dealing with this difficult and important topic. Included are periodicals, key compiled federal legislative histories, relevant congressional hearings, CRS Reports,…

Gale OneFile | High School Edition (formerly InfoTrac Student Edition) *

High school students will have access to age-appropriate content from magazines, journals, newspapers, reference books, and engaging multi-media covering a wide range of subjects, from science, history, and literature to political…

Gale In Context: U.S. History

Covers themes, events, individuals and periods in U.S. history from pre-colonial times to the present. The material also includes access to the citations for over 180 additional history journals from the Institute for Scientific…

Gale in Context | Middle School (formerly Research in Context) *

Discover reliable and trusted information on a variety of topics to support middle school student research for government, U.S and world history, geography, literature, sciences, and social issues. Research In Context offers…

Early American Imprints, Series II: Shaw-Shoemaker (1801-1819)

Covering every aspect of American life during the early decades of the United States, this rich primary source collection provides full-text access to the 36,000 American books, pamphlets and broadsides published in the first nineteen…

Early American Imprints, Series I: Evans (1639-1800)

Based on the renowned American Bibliography by Charles Evans. The definitive resource for every aspect of life in 17th- and 18th-century America, from agriculture and auctions through foreign affairs, diplomacy, literature, music,…

Archive of Americana

Search or browse the books, pamphlets, and other imprints listed in the renowned bibliography by Charles Evans, including publications unavailable earlier. Search or browse the books, pamphlets, broadsides and other imprints listed in…

America's Historical Newspapers (formerly Early American Newspapers, Series I 1690-1876)

America's Historical Newspapers features cover-to-cover reproductions of hundreds of historic newspapers, providing more than one million pages as fully text-searchable facsimile images. For students and scholars of early America, this…

Neal Gabler | Against The Wind: Edward Kennedy and the Rise of Conservatism, 1976-2009 with Patrick Kennedy

In conversation with former congressman Patrick Kennedy Neal Gabler is the author of Catching the Wind: Edward Kennedy and the Liberal Hour , a “rich and insightful” ( The New York Times ) account of the figure known as the most complex…

Kerri K. Greenidge | The Grimkes: The Legacy of Slavery in an American Family

In conversation with Tamala Edwards, anchor, 6ABC Action News morning edition Historian Kerri K. Greenidge is the author of  Black Radical: The Life and Times of William Monroe Trotter , a portrait of the post-Reconstruction civil…

George Lakey | Dancing With History: A Life for Peace and Justice

In conversation with Varshini Prakash Active in grassroot campaigns for social change for more than seven decades, sociologist and Quaker organizer George Lakey was first arrested at a civil rights demonstration in 1963 and most…

Andrew K. Diemer | Vigilance: The Life of William Still, Father of the Underground Railroad

Andrew K. Diemer is the author of  The Politics of Black Citizenship: Free African Americans in the Mid-Atlantic Borderland, 1817–1863 , an examination of the ways in which free Black Philadelphians and Baltimoreans fought to defend…

Stacy Schiff | The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams

In conversation with award-winning journalist and broadcaster Tracey Matisak Acclaimed for her “balanced, perceptive, thoroughly researched and exceptionally well written” ( The New Yorker ) nonfiction portraits of historical figures,…

Maggie Haberman | Confidence Man: The Making of Donald Trump and the Breaking of America

In conversation with Tamala Edwards, anchor, 6ABC Action News morning edition Maggie Haberman was part of a team that won a 2018 Pulitzer Prize for its reportage of the investigations into then-President Donald Trump’s, and his…

Charlayne Hunter-Gault | My People: Five Decades of Writing about Black Lives

In conversation with Dorothy Roberts Referred to by Jelani Cobb as “a Dean of American journalism,” Charlayne Hunter-Gault has chronicled some of the past half-century’s most important moments in Black life, culture, and politics. Often…

Anna Badkhen | Bright Unbearable Reality: Essays

In conversation with Airea D. Matthews, Philadelphia Poet Laureate and Co-Director of the Creative Writing Program at Bryn Mawr With an artist’s perspective and a ground-level view of people in extremis across the world, writer Anna…

Reza Aslan | An American Martyr in Persia: The Epic Life and Tragic Death of Howard Baskerville

Religion scholar Reza Aslan is the author of the No. 1 New York Times bestseller Zealot , “a lucid, intelligent page-turner” ( Los Angeles Times ) that sifts through centuries of mythmaking to present a clear account of the life and…

Saidiya Hartman and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor| Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-Making in Nineteenth-Century America

One of academia’s leading authorities on African American literature, enslavement, gender studies, and the ways in which marginalized people are excluded in historical narratives, Saidiya Hartman is a University Professor at Columbia…

Margaret A. Burnham | By Hands Now Known: Jim Crow’s Legal Executioners

In conversation with Tracey Matisak Margaret A. Burnham is the founding director of the Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project, an initiative to document every racially motivated killing in the South between 1930 and 1970. Also a…

Ben Macintyre | Prisoners of the Castle: An Epic Story of Survival and Escape from Colditz, the Nazis' Fortress Prison

Meelya Gordon Memorial Lecture “John le Carré’s nonfiction counterpart” ( The New York Times ), Ben Macintyre is the bestselling author of  A Spy Among Friends, Agent Zigzag, Operation Mincemeat, and The Spy and the Traitor , among…

Tommie Smith, Derrick Barnes, Dawud Anyabwile | Victory. Stand! Raising My Fist for Justice

In conversation with Tracey Matisak, award winning broadcaster and journalist Tommie Smith and John Carlos made history at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics when they stood at the winners’ podium and raised their black-gloved fists to…

Buzz Bissinger | The Mosquito Bowl: A Game of Life and Death in World War II

In conversation with Mark Bowden A Pulitzer Prize–-winning journalist and author of four books, Buzz Bissinger is perhaps best known for the New York Times bestseller  Friday Night Lights , the 1990 nonfiction chronicle of a Texas high…

Adam Schiff | Midnight in Washington: How We Almost Lost Our Democracy and Still Could

In conversation with Tracey Matisak, award winning journalist and broadcaster The United States Representative for California’s 28th Congressional District and the Chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Adam…

Mark Leibovich | Thank You for Your Servitude: Donald Trump's Washington and the Price of Submission

In conversation with Tracey Matisak, award winning broadcaster and journalist Mark Leibovich’s books include the No. 1 bestseller  This Town , a “vastly entertaining and deeply troubling” ( The New York Times Book Review ) exploration…

Malcolm Nance | They Want to Kill Americans: The Militias, Terrorists, and Deranged Ideology of the Trump Insurgency

In conversation with Marc Lamont Hill A world-renowned counterterrorism expert and former career intelligence officer who has deployed in the Balkans, the Middle East, and sub-Saharan Africa,  Malcolm Nance  is a longtime consultant for…

Patrick Radden Keefe | Rogues: True Stories of Grifters, Killers, Rebels and Crooks

In conversation with Karen Heller,  national features writer for The Washington Post,  formerly a metro and features columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer , and a finalist for the  2001 Pulitzer Prize in commentary. “A master of…

Valerie Biden Owens | Growing Up Biden: A Memoir

Meelya Gordon Memorial Lecture In conversation with Marjorie Margolies, President, Women's Campaign International and author of  And How Are the Children?: Timeless Lessons from the Frontlines of Motherhood The younger sister of…

Gene Andrew Jarrett | Paul Laurence Dunbar: The Life and Times of a Caged Bird

In conversation with Herman Beavers Gene Andrew Jarrett is the author of Representing the Race: A New Political History of African American Literature and Deans and Truants: Race and Realism in African American Literature . He is the…