Crossing Cultures: A Sicilian and American Family in Western New York

Crossing Cultures by visual artist Thomas MacPherson is a graphic narrative spanning generations of two immigrant families: one Sicilian and one Scottish. Unlike most Italian immigrants at the time the author’s family settled in small town America and struggled for acceptance while confronted with local prejudices. The book tells stories of hardships faced by a Read More …

Recollections of 3 Rebel Prisons

Col. Prey shares his observations as a Union officer captured with his regiment near Petersburg, VA, in August 1864 in this richly detailed account of the conditions and daily life in three Confederate prisons near the end of the Civil War. From the fateful battle where Prey was forced to surrender, through his several prison-bound Read More …

A Strenuous Day

Stretching three quarters of a century, from roughly 1870 to 1945, A Strenuous Day traces the lives of Harve and Hattie England of Maryville, Missouri, an otherwise ordinary couple caught up in events which transformed their lives. In telling their story, Mahood comes to know his grandparents, who are a very real part of a period in Read More …

An Inquiry Into the Nature and Tendency of Speculative Freemasonry

An Inquiry Into the Nature And Tendency of Speculative Freemasonry, the first person account by former mason John G. Sterns, was written to provide a historical account of Free Masonry and to warn the reader about its dangers.  “Free Masonry is an imposture, that is founded in error, and opposed to the Christian religion and Read More …

National Telephone Directory: October, 1894

To regard this early edition of AT&T’s National Telephone Directory as quaint, from our cell phone-crazy vantage 130 years later, is to discount the significance of the technology at the time. But still, it is pretty cute, starting with the iconic blue bell on the cover and the introductory General Information, which includes some very Read More …

Henry Clay: The Great Compromiser

One of the many publications issued by the Instructor Publishing Company (later called F.A. Owens Publishing Company), based in Dansville, New York, this small biography of Henry Clay was written as a text for history teachers, intended as a guide in their instruction of Henry Clay. Originally printed in 1899, what sets this biography apart Read More …

Rochester, the City of Beginnings

In her 1919 address to the Rochester Historical Association, H.E.B. Dow juxtaposes the city’s history of social tolerance and forward thinking with its religious conscience. This book is a must-read for those who wish to find out how anti-slavery, women’s suffrage, the temperance movement, the modern cult of spiritualists, anti-masonry, and even the raid on Read More …

Proceedings of the Centennial Celebration of the organization of the First Presbyterian Church

Little church histories are so often more than that—they are snapshots of specific places in specific times, of course, but the “granular” view they offer of local communities provides insight into the larger historical milieu. They are microcosmic, and interesting to locals, genealogists, and historians alike. This centennial history of Livonia, NY’s First Presbyterian Church Read More …

McFadden’s System of Physical Training: An illustrated system of exercise for the development of health, strength and beauty

Bernard Macfadden (born Bernarr McFadden) was nothing if not an interesting man. Considered to be a pioneer of physical culture as we know it, he was hailed by some and mocked by others. Detractors targeted him because of his tremendous ego, but no one could deny the man’s love for the human body. That love Read More …

Cobb’s Toys: Third Series, Stories about the Bear, Zebra, Lynx, Wild Boar, Walrus, Sloth and Anteater.

Lyman Cobb’s Toys is a collection of tiny books for tiny people. Priced at three cents and consisting of only sixteen pages, these children’s works are slight enough to fit in even the smallest of pockets. In the third volume of the third series, Cobb describes animals both common and exotic to an audience he Read More …