Catalog

Search our Catalog

U.S. History

Women's History Month

Pioneering women who led and won struggles for equality and civil rights; created and advanced educational and professional opportunities; and made great contributions to the arts, sciences and humanistic causes are honored each year during the month of March — National Women's History Month.

General History

Chronology of women worldwide: people, places & events that shaped women's history by Lynne Brakeman, editor ; Susan Gall, managing editor

Extraordinary women of the Medieval and Renaissance world: a biographical dictionary by Carole Levin ... [et al.]

Notable Black American women by Jessie Carney Smith, editor

Notable women in world government by edited by the editors of Salem Press

The reader's companion to U.S. women's history by editors, Wilma Mankiller ... [et al.]

Presidents Day

Instead of going to the mall for the Presidents Day sale, you can really celebrate by brushing up on some presidential history. A great place to start is the Internet Public Library's POTUS which provides biographical information, historical documents, and audio and video files. If this doesn't satisfy your historical sweet tooth, check out Public Papers of the Presidents at the American Presidency Project which has digitized over 85,000 documents related to the Presidency, including audio and video. Still not enough? The Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections contains detailed national results of all U.S. presidential elections since 1789.

African American History

The month of February has been set aside to celebrate the contributions of the country's African Americans. It was in 1926 that  Negro History Week was first organized by historian Dr. Carter G. Woodson (1875-1950) and others. During America's Bicentennial celebration in 1976, the one-week span was lengthened to four and February was established as Black History Month.  The Canton Public Library has a vast amount of resources for and about African Americans.

Books: Reference

Gold!

165 years ago, on January 24, 1848, gold was discovered at Sutter's Mill setting off the California Gold Rush. People began flocking to the state later that year, but the majority didn't arrive until the next year — hence the term "forty-niners." All told, the news drew some 300,000 people from all over the world (Latin America, Europe, Australia and China) between the years 1849 and 1855, to seek their fortune in California.

The age of gold: the California Gold Rush and the new American dream by H.W. Brands

The California Gold Rush and the coming of the Civil War by Leonard L. Richards

Days of gold: the California Gold Rush and the American nation by Malcolm J. Rohrbough

Roaring camp: the social world of the California Gold Rush by Susan Lee Johnson

Presidential History

Once every four years, Americans enter into a months-long national spectacle — often with bitter battles, high drama, mudslinging, and hilarious blunders. At the end of all of this discourse, we ultimately entrust the leadership of our country to the victor. Although, the election of George Washington as the country's first president was a foregone conclusion, the campaigns to follow were usually anything but. This Special Collection provides a guide to those individuals elected to lead our country, as well as a look at how the Presidential campaign has evolved in the last 200 years. As we observe Inauguration Day 2013, this is a good time to immerse yourself in some presidential history.

Reference Books

America at the polls. [Vol 2]: a handbook of American presidential election statistics by [compiled by] Alice V. McGillivray, Richard M. Scammon, Rhodes Cook

The American presidents by editor, first edition, Frank N. Magill ; associate editor, first edition, John L. Loos ; editor, revised edition, Tracy Irons-Georges

Guide to U.S. elections

Navy Ships to Commemorate Detroit's Part in the War of 1812

Two hundred years after Detroit surrendered to the British during the War of 1812, the city's riverfront will host a weeklong gala (Sept. 5- 10) which will include a replica tall ship, and four military ships. It was on August 16, 1812 that Gen. William Hull, commander of Fort Detroit, surrendered after being led to believe that the British forces across the river in Windsor were much larger than they actually were. After the war, he was court-martialed for his actions and sentenced to death, but was pardoned by President James Monroe because of Hull's service in the Revolutionary War. Visitors to the riverfront can expect to see the US Brig Niagara, the USS De Wert, the USS Huricane, and the Coast Guard Cutter Katmai Bay. The original USS Niagara was Adm. Oliver Hazard Perry's flagship during the War of 1812. The current ship was rebuilt in 1913, 1933 and 1988. Other planned events include concerts and a Red WIng alumni versus Navy personnel softball game.

The British Army at Mackinac, 1812-1815 by Brian Leigh Dunnigan; illustrated by Eric Manders

Eyewitness History

The beauty and the sorrow: an intimate history of the First World War by Peter Englund ; translated by Peter Graves


Berlin diary: the journal of a foreign correspondent, 1934-1941 by William L. Shirer ; with a new foreword by Gordon A. Craig


Blue-eyed child of fortune: the Civil War letters of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw by edited by Russell Duncan


Dear America: letters home from Vietnam by edited by Bernard Edelman for The New York Vietnam Veterans Memorial Commission ; [with a new introduction by Senator John McCain ; foreword by William Broyles, Jr.]


Dispatches from the front: the American war correspondent by Nathaniel Lande

History is Not Boring!

Time Travel to the Great Battles of the Civil War

Travel Back in Time to Pre-Civil War America

Meet the Women of the Civil War

African American Biographies

African Americans are at the heart of the greatest achievements of our history, from music to law, from politics to sports, from literature to religion.

Columbus Day

Christopher Columbus first made landfall in the Americas on October 12, 1492 somewhere in the Bahamas, on an island which the natives called Guanahani and which Columbus renamed San Salvador. This date is a observed as public holiday in the United States as well as in many countries in South America. It is known as Discovery Day in the Bahamas, Day of the Americas in Uruguay and Day of the Cultures in Costa Rica. Many historians, however, are still asking the question "Who really discovered America?" Everyone knows that Native Americans were here long before Columbus arrived.

Spy History

What could be more intriguing than a spy story, where truth is stranger than fiction or fiction incredibly true to life? Here are some suggestions for exciting reading material to "spies" up your life!

Books

General History

Operation Dark Heart: spycraft and special ops on the frontlines of Afghanistan--and the path to victory by Anthony Shaffer — Lt. Colonel Anthony Shaffer had run intelligence operations for years before he arrived in Afghanistan. He was part of the "dark side of the force"—the shadowy elements of the U.S. government that function outside the bounds of the normal system. Operation Dark Heart tells the story of what really went on—and what went wrong—in Afghanistan.

Labor Day

This legal holiday is celebrated in the United States on the first Monday of every September. The first Labor Day celebration dates back to a parade in New York on Tuesday, September 5, 1882. More than half the states were celebrating Labor Day by 1893, but it wasn't made a national holiday until June 28, 1894, when President Grover Cleveland signed it into law.

Books

Reference

Historical encyclopedia of American labor by edited by Robert Weir and James P. Hanlan

Labor conflict in the United States: an encyclopedia by edited by Ronald L. Filippelli — editorial assistant, Carol Reilly

US Labor History

Bread--and roses: the struggle of American labor, 1865- 1915 by Milton Meltzer — illustrated with contemporary prints & photographs — Using diaries, newspaper reports and other source material, the author shows the industrialization of America and the workers' struggle for higher working standards.

Child labor: an American history by Hugh D. Hindman — This book considers the issue of child labor as a social and economic problem in America from an historical perspective — as it was found in major American industries and occupations, including coal mines, cotton textile mills and sweatshops, in the early 1900s.

Civil War Anniversary

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the start of the American Civil War. The first shots were fired on April 12, 1861 at Fort Sumter in South Carolina's Charleston Harbor. Confederate forces let by Brig. General P.G.T. Beauregard demanded the surrender of the fort and opened fire when the Union commander, Maj. Robert Anderson, refused. He was forced to evacuate the next day, however, and this battle became the first engagement of the war. It raged on for four more years until Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulyssses S. Grant on April 9, 1865 at Appomattox Courthouse, Virginia.

Sixties: Popular Culture

The critical and popular acclaim for AMC's Emmy Award-winning drama Mad Men has piqued the interest of the viewing public in the culture and society of the 1960s. Set primarily at a major advertising agency on New York City's Madison Avenue, the show depicts the changing social mores of 1960s America while telling the story of Don Draper, the agency's creative director, and the people in his orbit.

American Revolution

The "shot heard round the world" fired at Lexington, Massachusetts on April 19, 1775 began the War for American Independence. On July 4, 1776 the Continental Congress unanimously declared the independence of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain, and embarked on the war that ended eight and a half years later on September 3, 1783 with the Treaty of Paris.

Books: Reference

American Eras: The Revolutionary Era, 1754-1783 edited by Robert J. Allison (1998)

Founding the Republic: A Documentary History edited John J. Patrick (1995)

Hispanic Heritage

National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from mid-September through mid-October each year. The resources in this Special Collection provide an introduction to the culture, identity and direction of the diverse population that is Hispanic.

Culture

Arte Latino: Treasures From the Smithsonian American Art Museum by Jonathan Yorba: This book documents 50 Latino artists from the U.S. and Puerto Rico as they explore their identity and influence on U.S. culture over the past two centuries through various media.

Edward M. Kennedy

Senator Edward M. Kennedy passed away early this morning after a long battle with cancer. He was 77. Kennedy, nicknamed "Ted," and known as the "Lion of the Senate" was first elected to represent Massachusetts in 1962. He is one of only six senators in U.S. history to serve more than 40 years. Throughout this time he played major roles in the passage of such landmark legislation as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act. He has also been one of the Senate's foremost champions of health care reform. Speaking to reporters after hearing the news of Kennedy's death, President Obama called him "not only one of the greatest senators of our time, but one of the most accomplished Americans ever to serve our democracy."