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Entries Tagged as 'Reading the Paper'

This Day (The Reports of My Death)

December 21st, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · 1 Comment

On this day in 1864, John Singleton Mosby was critically wounded in a Union cavalry ambush near Rectortown, in Fauquier County, after returning from a Ranger wedding. Mosby was whisked away to a doctor and safety before Union troopers discovered his identity. He subsequently was reported dead by the Union and Confederate press, to the glee of […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · This Day

This Day (Hear Ye! Hear Ye! Edition)

December 12th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

On this day in 1966, the United States Supreme Court announced that it would hear the case of Richard and Mildred Loving, a mixed-race couple who had married in Washington, D.C., and then were later arrested in their home south of Fredericksburg. Such marriages were then prohibited in Virginia, and the law had been upheld […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · This Day

Map of the Day

December 7th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

The above map, showing the Union army’s positions before Washington, D.C., appeared in a supplement to the New York Times on December 7, 1861. Headlined “The Army Before Washington,” the story begins: The interest which attaches to the military operations of the National army on the line of the Potomac, has induced us to present the […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Visual History

This Day (Virginia Answered Edition)

November 30th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

On this day in 1927, somewhere near the Virginia-Kentucky state line, a mob of several hundred men broke into a jail in Whitesburg, Kentucky, and used hacksaws to open the cell occupied by Leonard Woods, a black man accused of murdering a white Virginian. Unsure of what to do next, someone suggested the mob take […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · This Day

This Day (The Horrors! Edition)

November 28th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

On this day in 1863, the New York Times published a story headlined “Horrors of the Richmond Prisons; An Average of Fifty Victims Every Day; Disease Starvation and Death,” etc. This was not the work of reporters but a statement “by Surgeons just released from the Libby Prison, of the treatment received by our prisoners at Richmond,” […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · This Day

What the Poet Rhymed

November 13th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

In part 9 of our series on primary resources related to Sally Hemings, we consider an anonymous poem that appeared on the same page of the same issue of the same Richmond paper that first aired James Thomson Callender’s famous allegation about Thomas Jefferson and one of his slaves. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part […]

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Tags: Documents · Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

Why My Guy Didn’t Win

November 8th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

Earlier this week, on the occasion of Election Day, we reminded readers of how nasty past campaigns could be. The Connecticut Courant, for instance, declared back in the fall of 1800 that should Thomas Jefferson be elected president, the world as we know it would descend into violent chaos, that Jefferson’s sympathy for France’s Jacobite […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

If My Guy Doesn’t Win

November 6th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

It’s Election Day and we’re all tired of the negative campaigning. As such, it has become almost a tradition for bloggers and journalists to quote one of the most famously negative rants against a candidate in American history. It ran in the September 15, 1800, edition of the Connecticut Courant, and the author—identified only as […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

What the Editor Argued

November 6th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

In part 6 of our series on primary resources related to Sally Hemings, we consider “Life Among the Lowly,” an editorial published in the Waverly (Ohio) Watchman on March 18, 1873. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5.) In it the paper’s editor, John A. Jones, attacks the recollections of Madison Hemings, titled […]

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Tags: Documents · Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

What the Son Insisted

November 2nd, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · 3 Comments

In part five of our series on primary resources related to Sally Hemings, we consider the recollections of Madison Hemings. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.) This particular document is better understood as a “recollection,” rather than a memoir, because it’s the product of an interview with S. F. Wetmore, editor of the Pike County Republican in […]

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Tags: Documents · Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

What the Journalist Claimed

October 25th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

This is now our third in a series of primary resources associated with Sally Hemings. (Parts 1 and 2 can be found here and here.) Our not-yet-published entry on Hemings explains why “The President, Again,” by James Thomson Callender, was so important: In 1802, James Thomson Callender, who once had been Jefferson’s own hatchet man […]

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Tags: Documents · Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson

A Faithful Slave

July 19th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

On March 31, 1848, the Boston abolition paper the Liberator reprinted a short notice from the Western Citizen (Paris, Kentucky), which, in turn, had reprinted something from a South Carolina paper, all under the heading, “A Faithful Slave.” It explains why the South Carolina legislature should not make an exception to state law and free a […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper

Kids Those Days!

July 18th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

Props to the Genius of Liberty newspaper, out of Leesburg, for being skeptical. On July 18, 1820, the editors updated their readers on a story they ran “not long since,” in which a man in York, Pennsylvania, attempted to defraud a farmer there by “personating the devil.” Upon further investigation, prompted by “doubt of the fact,” […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

Whatever You May Do We Will Be Submissive

July 13th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · 2 Comments

Earlier this week we noted the anniversary of the Constitution of 1902, which disfranchised as many of Virginia’s black voters as the white delegates could get away with. All of this was done more or less out in the open; there was less of a tendency then to find euphemisms for racism. And as such, […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

Containing the Freshest Advices

July 11th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

Four front pages of the Virginia Gazette, all from July 11. Click to enlarge. From left to right, top to bottom: Parks’s Virginia Gazette, July 11, 1745; Parks’s Virginia Gazette, July 11, 1746; Purdie and Dixon’s Virginia Gazette, July 11, 1766; and Purdie and Dixon’s Virginia Gazette, July 11, 1771 (The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation)

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

The Odds Aren’t Bad, Really

July 10th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

For those of you who liked this bit of math, here are some more facts and figures, courtesy of the Abingdon Virginian, July 10, 1863: Chances in Battle. Rosecranz’s official report of the battle of Murfreesboro gives some figures, from which something of the chances of a fight may be derived. His army fired two […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

Nobody Likes an Escheat

July 10th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · 2 Comments

Above is page 4 of Dixon and Nicholson’s Virginia Gazette from July 10, 1779. It contains “A PROCLAMATION” by Virginia governor Thomas Jefferson regarding a new law from the General Assembly, “An act concerning escheats and forfeitures from British subjects.” Jefferson biographer Willard Sterne Randall explains: Jefferson began his next anti-Loyalist law, an act confiscating all […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Thomas Jefferson · Virginia History

To Gracious Ends Direct the Storm!

July 5th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

Page 1 of the Virginia Gazette, July 5, 1776, reporting not the momentous news out of Philadelphia, but the various pro-independence activities of the Virginia Convention meeting in Williamsburg (Library of Virginia).

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

Being a General 101

July 5th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

As far as I know, the game Risk did not exist 150 years ago, but if it did, the Scientific American was preparing its readers to win. This item, titled “Line of Battle,” appeared in the weekly magazine’s July 5 issue. This expression often occurs in referring to the order of troops on the battle field, […]

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Tags: Misc. · Reading the Paper

For Those of You with a Fly-Blow Problem

July 3rd, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

From the July 3, 1862, issue of the Richmond Daily Dispatch comes this interesting tidbit: To prevent fly-blow. –Many of our brave soldiers are wounded in such manner and in such localities that it is almost impossible to afford the instant and seasonable relief so necessary in such cases. In this weather fly-blows in the […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginiana

Beware the Chuckle-Headed Irishwoman

May 15th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

The Richmond Examiner is always a good read. As our entry on Civil War newspapers explains, it was the go-to organ of dissent in the Confederate capital, with editor John M. Daniel‘s criticism of Jefferson Davis becoming more intense and more personal as the war dragged on and defeat loomed. So above is the top […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · The Examiner

We All Have Our Blind Spots

May 11th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

On this day in 1868, the Petersburg Index reprinted a speech delivered by Robert E. Withers upon his acceptance of the Conservative Party nomination for governor. In his remarks, Colonel Withers, a Lynchburg newspaper editor, suggested that worse than the “utter horror” of the late war would be the adoption of a new state constitution—”this […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper

The KKK and Evolution in Virginia

May 10th, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

During the summer of 1925, the Scopes trial in Dayton, Tennessee, made the teaching of evolution in public schools a hot-button issue across the South. But if your knowledge of these events, like mine, is mostly limited to Spencer Tracy in Inherit the Wind (1960), then you might be surprised to know that the Ku […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · Virginia History

Extra! Extra! Movie Gets Papers All Wrong!

May 2nd, 2012 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

The stomach flu will do strange things to you. In my case, it convinced me to watch The Conspirator (2010), a terrible film about the trial of Mary Surratt, the woman who was hanged for her part in the plot to assassinate Abraham Lincoln. There she is above, on the left, viewed by a young […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper

The Toothbrush (Examiner Part VII)

May 20th, 2011 by Brendan Wolfe · No Comments

We’ve finally arrived at the sixth and final column of the May 17, 1864, edition of the Daily Richmond Examiner [pdf]. All right, actually we’re at the end of the fifth column, where the editors are passing along news of a “Yankee dog” calling himself Major Hogan who has claimed responsibility for firing the shot […]

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Tags: Reading the Paper · The Examiner