Dracula Released

On this day in 1897, Bram Stoker’s sensational novel Dracula is released upon the London public.

Excerpt from

…and it was pretty well received! By most, anyway. Though some reviewers found the novel not to their taste, many remarked on Dracula‘s ability to capture your attention from beginning to end.

Exciting story from beginning to finish

Early Review of Dracula

Dracula

Dracula has since become one of the quintessential classical Gothic novels and has inspired countless other stories in the years since its release.

Have you read Bram Stoker’s Dracula? What’s your favorite vampire story?

Find more like this on Newspapers.com with a search, or try your luck with browsing.

 

New and Updated Papers on Newspapers.com

Come explore *four new and updated papers on Newspapers.com: the Chicago Tribune, the Fort Lauderdale News, South Florida Sun Sentinel, and the Morning Call!

Sample Chicago Tribune front page
Chicago Tribune
The Chicago Tribune was founded in 1847. By the Civil War, the Tribune had adopted an anti-slavery stance and was influential in the election of President Abraham Lincoln. In 1974, the Tribune made history when it became the first newspaper to publish overnight the transcripts President Nixon had released of his infamous White House tapes. Today, the Tribune has one of the largest circulations in the country and remains an important paper in the Great Lakes region. Newspapers.com has issues from 1849 to 2016.

Sample Fort Lauderdale News front pageFort Lauderdale News and South Florida Sun Sentinel
The Fort Lauderdale News and South Florida Sun Sentinel are two related papers from Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Fort Lauderdale News traces its roots back to a paper founded in 1911, while the Sun Sentinel began publishing in 1960. In 1963, both papers were bought by the same company, with the News as its evening paper and the Sun Sentinel as its morning paper. The News stopped publication in 1992, while the Sun Sentinel is still published today. The Sun Sentinel serves Broward and Palm Beach counties and has one of the largest circulations in South Florida. It is recognized for its investigative reporting and editorial sports coverage, among other things. Newspapers.com has issues of the Fort Lauderdale News from 1925 to 1991, and issues of the South Florida Sun Sentinel from 1981 to 2017.

Sample The Morning Call front pageThe Morning Call
The Morning Call, based in Allentown, is Pennsylvania’s third-largest newspaper. It serves nine counties in eastern Pennsylvania and western New Jersey and is the leading paper in Lehigh Valley. The paper was founded in 1883 under the name the Critic but was renamed the Morning Call in 1895 as part of a contest in which the schoolboy or girl who could guess the paper’s new name would get five dollars in gold. The Morning Call was run primarily by the Miller family for most of its history, up until the 1980s. It is today known for its watchdog journalism. Newspapers.com has issues from 1895 to 2017.

Explore these and other papers on Newspapers.com!

*With a Newspapers.com Basic subscription, you can see issues of these papers through 1922; or, with a Publisher Extra subscription, access those early years and additional issues from 1923 onward.

Mothers of History

There can be no argument that mothers across the world play an incomparable role in raising, teaching, helping and loving their children and the children around them. In honor of Mother’s Day, here are three mothers whose contributions to their families and to history were truly remarkable.

Candy Lightner

Founder of Mothers Against Drunk Driving:
Candy Lightner, MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Drivers)

As the article above (from The Town Talk, 1985) says, Lightner’s teenage daughter was struck and killed by a drunk driver in 1980. The organization has only grown since then and continues the fight to end drunk and drugged driving and offer support to those affected by these avoidable tragedies.

Abigail Adams

 First Lady

Abigail Adams is recognized as an extraordinary woman whose strong intellect, attention to politics, and fierce support for women’s rights and the abolition of slavery made her a true trailblazer. Public sentiment at the time shows similar respect for her hard work in every area of life…
Notable Mother Abigail Adams….and whose opinion can be trusted more than that of her own son?
Tribute to Abigail Adams

Irena Sendler

Mother of the Children of the Holocaust

A fearless woman who was as much a mother to the children around her as she was to her own, Irena Sendler risked her life to save thousands of others.
Irena Sendler

As an employee of the Social Welfare Department in Warsaw, Sendler had permission to enter the Ghetto to conduct inspections. Instead, she used her time there to smuggle out young Jewish children and babies in whatever ways she could, with the help of a small network of volunteers. Around 400 of these children were aided by Sendler directly, a risk for which she eventually paid when she was arrested, beaten, and sentenced to death in 1943.

Brave beyond measure

A friend bribed the guards to let Sendler go and she was freed…after which she jumped right back into helping those who couldn’t help themselves.

Of course there are countless more amazing mothers who could not all be mentioned here. Why not try a search today on Newspapers.com for other famous mothers or a relative? Or feel free to browse the papers—who knows what sort of interesting things you might stumble upon?

Happy Mother’s Day!

Tip: Using Newspapers to Learn about Your Ancestor’s Life in the Poorhouse

Do you have ancestors who lived in a poorhouse? If so, newspapers are one of the resources you can use to discover what life may have been like for those family members.

Article about why many poorhouses are closing, 1938Alternatively called poor farms, county farms, or almshouses (depending on the region of the United States), poorhouses were typically run by counties (or sometimes towns) as a way to take care of people who were poor, old, disabled, or homeless and who had nowhere else to go. In Great Britain, such institutions were more often called workhouses. In the United States, poorhouses began to disappear after the Social Security Act was introduced in 1935, and they had almost totally disappeared by the 1950s.

It can be difficult to find records from poorhouses, so newspapers can be quite valuable in your research. Although individual “inmates” (as they were often called) of poorhouses are rarely mentioned by name in newspapers, you can typically discover quite a bit about the poorhouse they lived in from newspaper articles and piece together a picture of what your ancestor’s life in that poorhouse may have been like. (If you’re not sure if you have any ancestors who lived in a poorhouse, try reading this helpful article by Ancestry for guidance.)

If you know the name of the poorhouse where your ancestor resided, simply search Newspapers.com for the institution’s name to bring up search results. If you are unsure what the name of the poorhouse was in a certain area, use Newspapers.com to search the newspapers in the town or county (or even state) where the poorhouse was located using search terms like “poorhouse,” “county farm,” “poor farm,” or “almshouse.” You can then narrow the results by date range (such as your ancestor’s birth and death dates) if you desire.

If a broader look at poorhouses in America interests you, the St. Louis Star and Times published a series of articles on poorhouses in Missouri in 1922 and 1923 as part of a public awareness campaign to improve conditions in those institutions. Many of these articles paint a vivid picture of what some poorhouses were like at the time and can be quite eye-opening!

Get started learning more about poorhouses by searching on Newspapers.com!

Sold for $3

Ah, to live in the 19th century when people wore hats and pocket watches, automobile technology was on the horizon, and a husband could sell his wife and child to another man for dollars. Sold For Three Dollars

You’ll have to click through to the full article for the whole story. But the gist of it is that Mr. Rosengrant was annoyed by a remark made by his wife after a streak of bad luck with his business ventures, so he decided to shuffle her off to someone else and make some money in the process. Below is a copy of the contract made with his cousin, Raymond Parmer.

Contract

July 5 1900 Raymond Parmer Bought Gorge Rosengrant woman of him for 300 dolers and the little girl throw in and he agread to not Bother me nor me to Bother him X Gorge Rosengrant

Efforts at matrimony disastrous

Raise your hand if you’re not surprised.

Find more strange and interesting articles like these in the pages of Newspapers.com with a search or using the browse feature. And big thanks to Ann Sinton on Facebook for bringing our attention to this incredible article.

The Monster in Loch Ness

On this day in 1933, a monstrous modern legend was born in the waters of Loch Ness. The first claims of a sighting mentioned a large reptilian creature rolling around in the lake, a description that carried on through dozens of subsequent reports. The claims were met with pretty heavy skepticism, which continues today. But then again, so does the legend.

Sightings

The Monster of Loch Ness

The monster captured the attention of locals and tourists alike, drawing those who just wanted a glimpse as well as those with bigger aspirations.

How to Capture the Loch Ness Monster

Today, the Loch Ness monster has taken ranks with other mythical marvels and continues to be a source of curiosity, real or not.

Loch Ness Monster

Find more on the Loch Ness monster with a search on Newspapers.com, or browse the papers here.

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: May 31, 1889

The Johnstown Flood of 1889: May 31, 1889

On the afternoon of May 31, 1889, heavy rains caused the dam on Lake Conemaugh to fail, sending the water from the lake rushing downstream to devastate the city of Johnstown, Pennsylvania. With a death toll upwards of two thousand, the Johnstown flood was the deadliest natural disaster in American history up to that point.

Johnstown Flood of 1889 headlinesLake Conemaugh was a manmade reservoir created in 1853. In 1879, the lake and the surrounding land were sold to the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club to create a getaway in the Pennsylvania mountains for Pittsburg’s elite, including Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick, and Andrew Mellon. Although warned in 1881 by an engineer that the lake’s dam desperately needed maintenance—improper repairs, among other problems, had weakened the dam—the club ignored the recommendations.

Fourteen miles downstream from Lake Conemaugh was Johnstown, a booming steel mill city. An unusually heavy rainstorm that began on May 30, 1889, caused nearby rivers to overflow their banks, and the streets of Johnstown filled with water; the storm also caused the waters of Lake Conemaugh to rise rapidly. Despite frantic last-ditch efforts to prevent the dam from failing, the dam collapsed around 3 p.m. on the 31st.

The water of Lake Conemaugh was sent hurtling into the valley below, wreaking havoc on the smaller towns in its path and wiping out houses, trees, railcars, animals, and people. By the time the water reached Johnstown about an hour later, it was still dozens of feet deep and moving at about 40 miles per hour.

As the water cut its destructive path through Johnstown, the massive amount of debris carried by the flood accumulated against a stone railroad bridge that stood on the edge of the city. Somehow, the mountain of debris caught fire that evening, and the resulting conflagration killed many people who had been trapped in the debris.

The water from the dam took only about 10 minutes to sweep through the city, but it left incredible damage in its wake. More than two thousand people were killed, including ninety-nine entire families, and 1,600 homes were destroyed.

When news of the disaster reached the outside world, money and supplies came pouring in to help the people of Johnstown and the surrounding communities rebuild their homes, businesses, and lives. Clara Barton and her newly created American Red Cross provided relief for five months. Although lawsuits were filed against the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, none of them were successful, and the club was not held legally accountable for the disaster.

Learn more about the Johnstown Flood of 1889 on Newspapers.com.

New Papers Added!

Newspapers.com has added issues* for three major papers: the Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sentinel, and Hartford Courant! Since these papers each come from a different region of the United States (Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, and New England), together they provide important coverage of the eastern half of the country.

Sample The Baltimore Sun front pageBaltimore Sun
The largest paper in Maryland, the Baltimore Sun was founded in 1837. From the beginning, the paper operated under the philosophy of “news for all,” not just the moneyed classes, and focused on hard facts. By 1872, the paper had an official Washington bureau, and over the ensuing years added bureaus across the country and around the world. Interested in technological innovation, the Sun was an early adopter of technologies from the telegraph to the computer. Newspapers.com has issues from 1837–2016.

Sample The Orlando Sentinel front pageOrlando Sentinel
The Orlando Sentinel, a major paper in central Florida, traces its roots back to the Orange County Reporter, which began publishing in 1876 and is recognized as the first regular paper in Orlando. Today’s Sentinel is a product of various mergers between the Reporter, Orlando Evening Star, and South Florida (Orlando Morning) Sentinel. After various name changes, it became the Orlando Sentinel in 1982. Newspapers.com has issues from 1916–2016.

Sample Hartford Courant front pageHartford Courant
Founded in 1764, the Hartford Courant is one of the oldest continuously published papers in the United States and the biggest paper in Connecticut. The Courant began publishing before the United States was even its own country, and the paper had the widest circulation in colonial America. The Courant was seen as so important that when its paper mill was burned down during the Revolutionary War, the Connecticut legislature approved a lottery to pay for it to be rebuilt. Newspapers.com has issues from 1764–2016.

Explore these and other papers on Newspapers.com!

*With a Newspapers.com Basic subscription, you can see issues of these papers through 1922; or, with a Publisher Extra subscription, access those early years and additional issues from 1923 onward.

Der Rote Kampfflieger

On this day in 1918, German fighter pilot Manfred von Richthofen was killed. Both notorious for his deadly record and respected for his skill even by his enemies, he was known as “The Red Baron.”

The Red Baron

Freiherr von Richthofen

Richthofen’s flying career began in 1916, and he immediately proved himself in the field with his 15 victories against enemy aircraft in the first year. 1917 saw his incredible record continue to climb as he became a terror of the skies in the red-painted Fokker triplane that led to the “Red” half of the Red Baron nickname. He also published an autobiography, after which this post is titled, and his skill and character were so admired that even those who supported the Allied troops grudgingly admitted that maybe he wasn’t completely terrible.

By April 1918 Richthofen had an unprecedented 80 victories to his name, making him the ace-of-aces of the war. But we already know how this story ends. On April 21, while flying low in pursuit of an Allied plane, the Red Baron was shot with a single bullet through the chest. There are multiple theories about who fired the shot, but there is no debate that it was fatal. As stated in the above clipping, Richthofen, only 25 years old when he was killed, was given a full military funeral by the Allied squadron responsible for his body.

A regrettable death

Find more on the Red Baron, his career, and his death in the pages of Newspapers.com. Or, search or browse for clippings about a topic of interest to you.