Palaces of Sin, or The Devil in Society

by Col. Dick Maple

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“Colonel” Dick Maple was the fanciful pen name for Seth McCallen, who penned a great many highly polemical works. He wrote this particular work against alcohol and nightlife. In particular, he guards readers against women in corsets, who drink or otherwise dabble in lifestyles or actions he finds unseemly. The women in his stories often come to sad endings as a result of their desire to enjoy equal opportunities with men in vice and pleasure. McCallen was far from a person anyone should take seriously. He is known for writing and publishing some of the most extraordinarily vile and racist diatribes in The National Rip-Saw. In 1910, McCallen had a stroke, but the publisher hired W. S. Morgan in order to imitate his hateful style. Thankfully, the style and messages were so unappealing and subscriptions dropped so low that the magazine had to send issues to random addresses to fulfill advertising terms.

 

Secrets & Lies in the United Kingdom: Analysis of Political Corruption

by Fabienne Portier-Le Cocq

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Secrets & Lies in the United Kingdom: Analysis of Political Corruption lifts the shroud of secrecy in the United Kingdom in relation to modern freemasonry in Scotland in the late-18th century, the ‘Stolen Generations’ in Australia from the early 1900s to the late 1970s, Enoch Powell’s motives for resigning, Britain’s secret plan for a nuclear power station in Wales, intentional and unintentional disclosures of secret information about the Liberal Democrats and their rivals, the ‘culture of secrecy’ of English police forces, and the paradoxical co-existence of secrecy and transparency in the English justice system.

Editor Fabienne Portier-Le Cocq is Professor of Contemporary British Studies at the University of Tours, France, and conducted research for the European Commission (Daphne II programme) for four years. She authored Sexualités et maternités des adolescentes : Voix anglaises et écossaises (Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2009), co-authored Les Politiques de jeunesse au Royaume-Uni et en France (Presses Sorbonne nouvelle, 2012), and has recently edited Fertility, Health and Lone Parenting: European Contexts (Routledge, 2017). She is currently preparing a book on motherhood in the global context.

 

A Frenchman in the Gold Rush: The Journal of Ernest De Massey, Argonaut of 1849

by Ernest De Massey, Translated by Marguerite Eyer Wilbur

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Ernest De Massey arrived in the United States in 1849. He went to San Francisco, and became a retailer, since he had the capital and came from some wealth. However, the lure of the Gold Rush was too much for him, so he decided to close his shop and follow many of his customers into the mountains in hopes of striking it rich. He tried prospecting in multiple areas, including Klamath River. Like many, he left with empty pockets and dashed dreams, though he was very fortunate to have kept his health. Prospecting was very arduous, and frequently dangerous. De Massey only lasted five months before giving up, after falling seriously ill. He decided to return to San Francisco and the somewhat more stable life of an entrepreneur. But in 1857 he returned to Europe. De Massey’s fascinating first hand account illustrates how the Gold Rush mesmerized so many.

 

The Etchings of Rembrandt: A Study and History

by P. G. Hamerton

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Philip Gilbert Hamerton (1834-1894) was an Englishman who was devoted to the arts in numerous forms. He became an orphan at the age of ten; his mother died giving birth to him, and he ended up living with two aunts when he turned five. Five years after that, his father died. At first, he tried his hand at poetry, but his work was not well received. He moved onto painting, in particular, landscape painting. However, his work was also not well-received. On a more positive note, while he was painting in the Scottish Highlands, he met his wife, Eugénie Gindriez. While his painting and poetry was not fawned over, his book, Painter’s Camp in the Highlands, published in 1863, was lauded. Due to the praise, Hamerton stuck with art criticism, and went on to write other works, such as Etching and Etchers (1866) and Contemporary French Painters (1867). He also wrote novels, biographies, and reflections on society.

This new edition is dedicated to Gordon Alt, whose energetic lifelong efforts for the arts have saved many important works that otherwise would have perished.

 

 

The Capture and Execution of John Brown: A Tale of Martyrdom

by Elijah Avey

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Slavery was truly an awful institution that, even today in its legacy, continues to plague the United States. During its height, abolitionists “waved the bloody flag” and vigorously protested to end it, though it took plunging the nation into the Civil War to result in it being finally eradicated. One person that took a powerful stand against “the peculiar institution” was John Brown. Though Brown had led forces against pro-slavery opponents earlier, it wasn’t until 1859 when he grabbed the national stage by leading forces, particularly enslaved African Americans, at Harper’s Ferry. The movement was ultimately unsuccessful, and Brown was captured and tried for treason against the Commonwealth of Virginia (before Harper’s Ferry was part of West Virginia). He was hanged despite vocal opposition from his supporters. Yet, his work as an abolitionist created ripples of tension that significantly fueled the drift towards war. This work is written by Elijah Avery, who offers a detailed, eyewitness account of the events, and contextualizes John Brown’s life.

This new edition is dedicated to the efforts of the American Public University System to preserve the artifacts of historic Charles Town in West Virginia with its associations with John Brown.

 

The History of Men’s Raiment

by The Edson Lewis Company

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Strouse & Brothers, originating out of Baltimore, published this unique tract on the history of men’s fashion in the European world. The work begins with a very brief history of fashion, and then links the Strouse & Brothers firm to that history of high quality fashion. It offers a fascinating look at early forms of advertising in the United States, and of course, fashion and changing tastes. Strouse & Brothers considered itself a purveyor of “High Art fashion.” The high quality illustrations included reveal that “High Art fashion” has developed very different meanings over the years. For Strouse & Brothers, it simply meant well-tailored suits paired with fashionable hats in 1910. Strouse & Brothers enjoyed a long history in Baltimore, becoming one of the largest clothiers in the city. It was founded in 1868 by Leopold Strouse, one of six brothers who emigrated from Germany to the United States.

 

The Prisoners of 1776: A Relic of the Revolution

by Rev. R. Livesey

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Most of this work is not by Rev. R. Livesey, but rather by Charles Herbert, who was made prisoner by the English during the Revolutionary War. The journal begins around November 15, 1776, shortly after Herbert was captured while on the brigantine, Dolton. While imprisoned, he suffered from smallpox, but recovered and then was sent to Old Mill Prison, located in Plymouth, England, in 1777. He was held there until March 19, 1779, when he was exchanged for English prisoners. Herbert tried to escape many times, and even succeeded once, but he, along with a majority of other prisoners, were recaptured. After his release, Herbert went on to be married to Holly Butler on November 8, 1783, and earned a living as a block-maker, until he died at the age of 49 on September 4, 1808. The journal was written in code and had to be translated. Special Collections at the University of Delaware Library in Newark, Delaware has archival holdings on this work.