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Posts from the Manuscripts and Archives Division

Stonewall in Pictures

The White House designation of Stonewall as a national monument prominently featured LGBT historical materials from our Manuscripts & Archives Division, available online in our Digital Collections. Read More ›

Mary Katherine Goddard's Declaration of Independence

Most Americans in the revolutionary period found out who signed the Declaration of Independence in print, not parchment. Publicizing the signers’ names was a bold step considering that they were endorsing treason.Read More ›

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker Diary, June 24, 1802

One woman's account of a parade of Freemasons in early-nineteenth-century New York City.Read More ›

Election Confections: Harrison Cake and Other Historical Political Treats

The presidential election of 1840 was a fascinating moment in American political—and confectionary—history. While Harrison's status as a well-known war hero almost certainly contributed to his victory, I like to believe that his popularity was further bolstered by the cake created in his honor.Read More ›

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker Diary, May 27, 1799

A major lottery jackpot in 1799 captures the attention of Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker.Read More ›

Celebrating the Stamp Act's Repeal, May 19, 1766

One Philadelphian's account of the celebrations accompanying the repeal of the Stamp Act in 1766, and what it tells us about the coming of the American Revolution.Read More ›

A Melville Marginalia Mystery

A researcher's reading of erased marginalia provides insight to Melville's thoughts on religion.Read More ›

Edwin Miller Interviews for Seventeen Magazine in Archives and Manuscripts

Find celebrity Seventeen interviews from 1946-1988 in the Manuscripts and Archives Division at The New York Public Library.Read More ›

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker Diary, April 30, 1800

The tense New York State elections of 1800, as seen through the diary of Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker.Read More ›

The Material Realities of Slavery in Early New York

A look at the history of slavery in early New York, through the estate of the manor lord, Adolphus Philipse.Read More ›

Violet Oakley: An Interview with Dr. Bailey Van Hook

Dr. Bailey Van Hook recently published the first full-length biography of artist Violet Oakley. In this interview, she discusses her work and what made Oakley an interesting subject, as well as her research in our archival collections.Read More ›

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker Diary, March 31, 1800

The story of a a sensational murder in early-nineteenth-century New York, told through a young woman's diary.Read More ›

Recently Digitized Early American Manuscript Collections, March 2016

Recently digitized collections of early American manuscripts.Read More ›

Politicizing the Federal Courts in Early America

We often bemoan the recent politicization of the federal courts and especially appointments to the Supreme Court, but this has been a source of political strife since the creation of the federal judiciary. The judicial politics of the Jeffersonian era help explain why the Supreme Court remains such a charged issue in our own time.Read More ›

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker Diary, February 8, 1800

Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker lived through a tumultuous period in the history of labor in New York City. Here is a page from her diary, 216 years ago today.Read More ›

Hannah Lawrence Schieffelin's Journey Through Revolutionary America

On September 15, 1780, Hannah Lawrence Schieffelin “abandoned the paternal mansion that so long bounded my wishes,” boarded a “small vessel,” and left her home in New York for Quebec. Her narrative describes events, peoples, and places far removed from the center of the American Revolutionary struggle.Read More ›

The Diary of Elizabeth De Hart Bleecker, 1799-1806

Periodically, for the next year, we will write blog posts featuring a single entry, or a series of entries, from the Bleecker diary: a source from and about New York City in its formative era.Read More ›

Silas Deane: Reading and Parenting in Revolutionary America

Political elites are well represented in archival collections. One of the great virtues for historians is that a lot of their family correspondence survives, though it is not always included in edited volumes that focus on political events. Through these papers we can glimpse family life at an emotional level.Read More ›

Check Out These Spuds! Eight 'Potatoes' for Hanukkah

What would Hanukkah be without potato pancakes? Read More ›

Top 9 Documents from the Boston Committee of Correspondence Records

The BCC records is an important resource for understanding the American Revolution. But it is also a massive and unwieldy one. To make things easier, I've put together a list of nine important and representative documents from the BCC records, which, taken together, offer a rough outline of the BCC's activities and functions during the 1770s and 1780s, as well as a sense of the Committee's place in the larger story of the American Revolution.Read More ›
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