“And the sea will grant each man new hope . . . “

“ . . . his sleep brings dreams of home.”—Christopher Columbus On August 3, 1492 Christopher Columbus set sail on his first voyage. Christopher Columbus was born in the seaport town of Genoa, Italy circa 1451. He developed a love for the sea at an early age and eventually settled in Lisbon, Portugal. While searching for an easy route to the East Indies, he was certain that he could reach India and the Spice Islands by sailing westward. After seven years of struggling to win support for his plan, he and a crew of ninety set sail on August 3, 1492 aboard three ships—the “Nina, the “Pinta,” and Columbus himself in command of the flagship “Santa Maria.” After several mishaps and many hardships, they reached the island of San Salvador on October 12, 1492. Sources consulted: Stamp Design Files, Scott Specialized Catalogue 2005, A1972-A1975, April 24, 1992, #2620-2623 (entitled “First Voyage of Christopher Columbus”). The Story of Columbus on Stamps by George J. Lofts – HE6183 C72L82 1944 NPM. Columbus more »

And Called it Macaroni . . .

Journal des dames et des modes, 1914 It's Macaroni Day, but instead of mostaccioli rigati or fettucine or soba noodles, a different little ditty comes to mind: Yankee Doodle went to town, A-riding on a pony; He stuck a feather in his hat, And called it macaroni I used to think that the macaroni in the song referred to the feather itself, but it was actually a pejorative term for an over-the-top dandy, from the Italian word maccherone, which meant "blockhead." It pre-dates the Revolution, supposedly French and Indian war era, coming from the British mocking their less stylish Yankee counterparts. But Yankees adopt all things, positive and negative, and absorb them into their culture, as this song is now synonymous with America and a patriotic spirit. So go ahead and stick that feather in your hat, Signore Maccherone. —Elizabeth Periale

D-Day the Sixth of June

Belt Life Preserver, Armed Forces History, Division of History of Technology, National Museum of American History, Master Tire and Rubber Company (Manufacturer) 50 Mission Crush Hat, Armed Forces History, Division of Technology, National Museum of American History The Libraries has many items in its collections and catalog relating to D-Day.  The National Museum of American History also features WW2 objects in its exhibition The Price of Freedom: Americans at War. Here are some additional resources: West Point in the Making of America "First Wave at Omaha Beach," Atlantic Magazine, by S. L. A. Marshall National D-Day Museum U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command  Library of Congress—Veterans History Project  —Elizabeth Periale, with the help of Chris Cottrill

Women’s History Month: Homemaking

Mrs. Lydia Green Abell, Woman in her various relations; containing practical rules for American females, 1853, The title page from "Woman in her various relations" emphasizes the sanctity of motherhood. In her book, Woman in her various relations; containing practical rules for American females, etiquette expert Lydia Green Abell wrote on topics she felt would interest women of the mid-19th century such as: THE BEST METHODS FOR DINNERS AND SOCIAL PARTIES—A CHAPTER FOR YOUNG LADIES, MOTHERS, AND INVALIDS—HINTS ON THE BODY, MIND, AND CHARACTER—WITH A GLANCE AT WOMAN'S RIGHTS AND WRONGS, PROFESSIONS, COSTUME, ETC., ETC. She talks about the American Woman in the introduction: The present volume is offered to the public, dedicated to American Females. We are living when the allotments and responsibilities of Woman, in her own appropriate sphere, should be brought before the mind in their true weight and importance. And expands on the modern American Woman later in the text: Woman, as mistress of a family, occupies a station where her influence is deeply, if not widely felt. more »

Pearl Harbor Day

The National Museum of American History Library has many books in its collection about that infamous day, December 7, 1941: A date which will live : Pearl Harbor in American memory / / Emily S. Rosenberg. December 7, 1941 : America's darkest day / / by Susan Wels ; foreword by Senator Daniel K. Inouye; introduction by Sir John Keegan. —Chris Cottrill and Lu Rossignol

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