Posts tagged ‘pennsylvania’

Acta Germanopolis: Records of the Corporation of Germantown, Pennsylvania, 1691-1707 (Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania)

Acta Germanopolis:
Records of the Corporation of
Germantown, Pennsylvania, 1691-1707

by J. M. Duffin (Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania)
(Hardcover, 700 pages, 2008, ISBN: 9780615217659, $75.00)

Acta GermanopolisThis 700-page volume contains the full text of Germantown’s 17th and 18th century town records in both their original languages and in English translation.

It also includes extensive appendices on the naturalization records of the first residents of Germantown and their landholdings through the year 1714.

This book is the product of 15 years of labor by J. M. Duffin, a distinguished Fellow of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania (GSP). Mr. Duffin has edited the book and also contributed a comprehensive Introduction, while Professor Don Yoder of the University of Pennsylvania (and another Fellow of the GSP) has written an informative Foreword on Germantown’s role in the history of Pennsylvania and German immigration to America.

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July 21, 2010 at 1:51 pm Leave a comment

Elin’s Amerika by Marguerite de Angeli (American Swedish Historical Museum)

Elin’s Amerika (Revised, 3rd Ed.)
by Marguerite de Angeli
American Swedish Historical Museum
(Paperback, 98 pages, 2007, $16.00, ISBN: 0980076102)

Elin's AmerikaAward-winning children’s author Marguerite de Angeli tells the story of Elin, a young girl who has come to live in the New Sweden Colony.

She helps us envision how these many different peoples — Swedes, Finns, Lenape, Minquas (Susquehannock), Dutch and British related to one another.

Elin’s search for friendship, love of family, and anticipation of celebrations seem familiar. Her isolation from other children, lack of basic things, and the daily routine of chores may seem quite unfamiliar.

New Sweden was established in 1638, under the guidance of Peter Minuit, when Swedish colonists were sent to the New World to claim lands in the area around the Delaware River in southeastern PA and south NJ. For ages 8-12. Illustrations.

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July 21, 2010 at 11:28 am Leave a comment

Polar Hayes: The Life and Contributions of Isaac Israel Hayes, M.D. (American Philosophical Society Memoir 262, ISBN: 9780871692627)

Polar Hayes: The Life and Contributions of Isaac Israel Hayes, M.D.
(American Philosophical Society Memoir, ISBN: 9780871692627)
by Douglas W. Wamsley (Hardcover, 547 pages, 2009, $75.00)

Polar Hayes
In the mid-19th century as an ambitious young country expanded its horizons westward, Dr. Isaac Israel Hayes, a young physician from an Orthodox Quaker family in the rural farmland of Pennsylvania, turned his eyes to the North.

As a member of the harrowing American arctic expedition under the command of Dr. Elisha Kent Kane in search of the lost British explorer Sir John Franklin, Hayes became obsessed with making his own mark in the far northern polar regions.

He organized his own privately funded voyage to the Arctic in 1860, during which he claimed to have reached a ‘farthest north’ and to have stood on the edge of the fabled “Open Polar Sea,” a mythical ice-free zone in the high northern latitudes.

Through his own hard fought experiences, combined with the knowledge learned from native Greenlanders or Polar Eskimos, he successfully influenced the course of Arctic discovery, causing perceptive explorers to follow his guidance and lead. Directing the same ambition to humanitarian and social causes, during the devastating U.S. Civil War and as an elected politician in New York State during its Gilded Age, Hayes served the ‘public good’ for a decade, with accomplishments as far reaching as his Arctic service, but little recognized even during his lifetime.

In this book, which draws upon Hayes family papers, the little viewed diaries from Hayes’s own expeditions, as well as other unpublished primary sources, the story emerges of a remarkable but forgotten explorer, writer, politician, and humanitarian who epitomized the rugged and restless spirit of adventure and individualism of 19th-century America. Illustrations.

“Polar Hayes” has been nominated for the 2010 William Mills Prize [PDF], which honors the best Arctic or Antarctic nonfiction books published throughout the world, according to the Polar Libraries Bulletin.

“All aspects of Hayes’ life are packaged in a marvelously researched book that effectively uses valuable primary source material, some of it newly discovered,” writes Hal Vogel in Arctic Magazine (December 2009) [PDF]. “Wamsley’s thorough knowledge of his subject and environment can often be seen when he refers to collateral polar events and personalities that were influenced by Hayes.

“His descriptions of the Kane expedition from the perspective of Dr. Hayes are especially noteworthy. They alone make a worthwhile read. Dr. I.I. Hayes lacked a biography, but deserved one. Now he has one that deserves its place among our best polar biographical literature.”

“Lawyer and independent scholar Wamsley has written and lectured extensively on 19th-century Arctic exploration and explorers,” writes Book News in a review. “Here he narrates how Hayes (1832-81), a Quaker physician from rural Pennsylvania, got a taste of Arctic exploration early then became a leading advocate of it as a means of advancing science and geography. Overcoming public apathy, he organized and led the first privately funded American expedition to find the North Pole, thus initiating the modern pole race.”

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July 7, 2010 at 9:59 pm Leave a comment

Weekly Special: Ben Franklin’s Art of Eating Cookbook with Colonial Recipes

Weekly Book Special: January 11th-17th

Benjamin Franklin on The Art of Eating:
Together with the Rules of Health and Long Life and the Rules to Find out a Fit Measure of Meat and Drink, with Several Recipes

by Benjamin Franklin and Gilbert Chinard, introduction by Roy Goodman
(Paperback, 72 pages, 2006, $10.00)

This week we commemorate the birth of Benjamin Franklin on January 17th. Franklin, who would be turning 303 years old this coming weekend, was one of the United States’ Founding Fathers: a scientist, politician, printer, diplomat and inventor. He also had an insatiable curiosity for cooking.

“Let the gentleman who seems ignorant of the matter do us the honour of a visit in America, and I will engage to breakfast him every day in the month with a fresh variety,” Franklin told an anonymous letter writer who criticized American food.

Chefs will find a splendid collection of colonial-era recipes and food tidbits discovered in Franklin’s private journals. Written in English and French with illustrations, the book sheds new light on the man who founded electricity and had a sweet tooth.

Our affiliate the American Philosophical Society, a scholarly organization that Franklin founded in 1743, originally published the book in 1958. In 2006, the Society reprinted it in a special edition to celebrate the 300th anniversary of Franklin’s birth.

My favorite recipe is for the delicious punch Orange Shrub:
Orange Shrub Punch

This book also contains an essay on “Benjamin Franklin On the Art of Eating” by Gilbert Chinard; a collection of Franklin’s “Rules [for Eating] and Recipes” and an introduction by Roy Goodman, assistant librarian and curator of printed materials at the American Philosophical Society.

Student bloggers at Colorado State University have more of Franklin’s excerpts.

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January 11, 2010 at 12:29 pm Leave a comment


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