Women’s History Month: Sonia Delaunay

Artist Sonia Delaunay, who is featured in major museum collections in the United States and Europe is one of the artists featured in the Libraries' Vibrant Visions: Pochoir Prints in the The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum Library: The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum Library has a rich collection of vibrantly colored illustrated books and periodicals that were created using the pochoir stenciling process. The pochoir process, characterized by its crisp lines and brilliant colors, produces images that have a freshly printed or wet appearance. This display provides a brief history and description of the pochoir process along with select examples of pochoir images from the library's collection that illustrate costume, interior, and pattern designs produced in France from 1900 through the 1930s. Pochoir plates were regularly used in French fashion journals, such as Le Jardin des Dames et des Modes and the Gazette du Bon Ton: arts, modes & frivolités, created by well-known artists such as George Barbier, to illustrate costume styles and set the tone for haute couture in the more »

Let’s go to the zoo

As the weather gets warmer, many people are going to the zoo. As you make your plans, why not take a virtual zoo tour courtesy of the Libraries, via Zoos: A Historical Perspective? —Elizabeth Periale  

Women’s History Month: Agnes Mary Clerke

Astronomer Agnes Mary Clerke is just one of the many portraits to be found in the Libraries' Scientific Identity: Portraits from the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology: Agnes Mary Clerke (1842 – 1907) The scientific portrait collection in the Dibner Library was assembled by Bern Dibner, who obtained most of the portraits during the 1940s from print dealers in Boston, London, and Paris. By 1950 he had about two thousand images and arranged them into ten scientific subdivisions: Botany, Chemistry, Electricity, Geology, Mathematics, Medicine, Philosophy, Physics, Technology, and Zoology. The portraits are of various types: woodcuts, copper and steel engravings, mezzotints, lithographs, oil paintings, and photographs. Many of them are images that were printed as separate items, used as gifts to send to colleagues and admirers. The exchange of portraits among scientists in the eighteenth century became a very popular form of correspondence. A number of prints also served as frontispieces of books and, unfortunately, a few of the prints in the collection had originally been more »

Drink your milk

This history of the Borden Condensed Milk Co. is told through an allegory of an Eagle – only one of the wonderful World's Fair materials featured in the Libraries' Revisiting the World’s Fairs and International Expositions: A Selected Bibliography, 1992-2004. The Borden's Condensed Milk Co. exhibit pamphlet also includes maps and plans of the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition. E pluribus unum : the story of an eagle, Borden Company, New York: Borden's Condensed Milk Co., 1904 Meet me in St Louis, Louis… —Elizabeth Periale

Women’s History Month: Gabrielle-Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, marquise du Châtelet

She is known for her translation into French of Sir Isaac Newton’s Principia Mathematica. Hers is one of many scientific portraits to be found in the Libraries' Scientific Identity: Portraits from the Dibner Library of the History of Science and Technology: Gabrielle-Émilie Le Tonnelier de Breteuil, marquise du Châtelet (1706 – 1749), engraving by R. D'Elvaux based on original by M. A. Loir. The scientific portrait collection in the Dibner Library was assembled by Bern Dibner, who obtained most of the portraits during the 1940s from print dealers in Boston, London, and Paris. By 1950 he had about two thousand images and arranged them into ten scientific subdivisions: Botany, Chemistry, Electricity, Geology, Mathematics, Medicine, Philosophy, Physics, Technology, and Zoology. The portraits are of various types: woodcuts, copper and steel engravings, mezzotints, lithographs, oil paintings, and photographs. Many of them are images that were printed as separate items, used as gifts to send to colleagues and admirers. The exchange of portraits among scientists in the eighteenth century became a very popular more »

Women’s History Month: Amelia Earheart

The Libraries has some wonderful digital collections, including the Bella C. Landauer Collection of Aeronautical Sheet Music. The collection features music about ballooning, aviation, and popular subject of aviation theme music, Amelia Earheart. From the introduction, by librarian Paul McCutcheon: Early development in aeronautics has been accompanied by great popular interest and media coverage. This widespread fascination with flight has inspired an enormous output of historical drawings, paintings, advertisements and illustrations for publications. Some of the most colorful illustrations are those which adorn sheet music. In the Bella Landauer collection, you can find illustrations that range from the bizarre to the commonplace, from the humorous to the mundane. But most are colorful and interesting. The earliest known aeronautical song was published in 1785. Entitled Chanson sur le Globe Aerostatique, it depicts a Montgolfier balloon ascending from the Tuilleries in Paris. This piece was followed by countless musical compositions dealing with all phases of aeronautics. "Wrong-Way" Corrigan had his bard, no less than Lindbergh. And there was always someone to opine more »

Benjamin Franklin’s Political Arithmetic

The Libraries latest published Dibner Library lecture is Benjamin Franklin's Political Arithmetic: A Materialist View of Humanity by Joyce E. Chaplin, the James Duncan Phillips Professor of Early American History at Harvard University. Dr. Chaplin received her B. A. at Northwestern University, her M. A. and Ph.D. at the Johns Hopkins University, and was a Fulbright Scholar to the United Kingdom in 1985-86. Her most recent book, The First Scientific American: Benjamin Franklin and the Pursuit of Genius (2006), was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and won the Annibel Jenkins Biography Prize of the American Society for Eighteenth Century Studies. She is currently writing a history of around-the-world travel, from Magellan the Spanish explorer to Magellan the GPS. We would like to present the first of a few excerpts from the published lecture to pique your interest. if you would like to receive the lecture in print, please contact the Dibner Library. If you can't wait for the next installment, you may also view the PDF. more »

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