Bits of American History: Broadsides and Ephemera

From corset ads to Civil War announcements, this collection, American Broadsides and Ephemera, offers a wonderful glimpse into the American past through print media.

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Based on the American Antiquarian Society’s collection–the most extensive in existence–this digital edition offers fully searchable facsimile images of approximately 15,000 broadsides printed between 1820 and 1900 and 15,000 pieces of ephemera printed between 1760 and 1900. The diverse subjects of these broadsides and ephemera range from contemporary accounts of the Civil War, unusual occurrences, and natural disasters to government proclamations, tax bills, trade cards, menus, playbills, and stock certificates.

For researchers of nineteenth-century social and cultural history, these materials provide essential information on a wide variety of local and national organizations and societies that were established to promote industrial and mechanical arts, agriculture, science, public education, fine arts, and various reform movements.

Kristen Pantle