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For Grain and Provision Dealers

The rather curious title of this post comes in part from a serial title, but doesn’t really do justice to what is actually in the publication.  That job is left to the publication’s full title which does a better job of letting readers know what to expect. The full title is Ready Reference Book for Grain and Provision Dealers, showing the highest and lowest prices in the Chicago Market of Wheat, Corn, Pork, Oats, Lard and Short Ribs, each month for twenty-seven years, but it doesn’t end there.  It goes on to say: Also, the Yearly Crop of Wheat and Corn for Fifteen Years, and Annual Exports. Stocks of Wheat in Store in Chicago, every Month for Fifteen Years, and Visible Supply with FULL PACKING STATISTICS, and other interesting and valuable Facts and Figures, for reference and general information.

1884 cropsCBOTWe have issues from 1885-1889 — and it was chock full of charts and numbers.  I can’t do a better job than the title at giving a reader an idea about what to expect, but I did want to include at least one chart.  I do love a good chart, and there’s always a chance that someone wants to know the monthly opening, highest, lowest, and closing prices for corn, wheat, oats, pork, lard and short ribs in 1884.

While the title indicates an item without much artistic merit, the publishers did include this nice little drawing of the “new” Chicago Board of Trade building which was dedicated in April 1885.  The Library of Congress collection includes photographs that show traders on the floor of the CBOT, including this one from 1900 and others from 1903 and 1905.

Launching a Data Revolution: Ilya Zaslavsky, Ph.D., Speaking on February 23

This post was authored by Tomoko Steen, Ph.D., Science Research Specialist in the Science, Technology, and Business Division of the Library of Congress. On Thursday, February 23, 2017, Dr. Ilya Zaslavsky will be speaking at the Library of Congress about online systems for visual analysis, sharing of surveys and image collections, and applications for analyzing […]

Broccoli, Opossum, and Gingerbread: Presidential Food

Today’s post is written by science librarian and culinary specialist Alison Kelly. She has provided her expertise in a number of Inside Adams blog posts related to food history and cooking such as Early American Beer, and Early Mixology Books. Abraham Lincoln liked gingerbread cookies, William Howard Taft enjoyed roast opossum, and Ronald Reagan always […]

Hidden Figures No More: African American Women in Space Exploration

Today’s post was written by Denise Dempsey a Science Reference Librarian. The recent release of the new film Hidden Figures, based on the book of the same name by Margot Lee Shetterly, presents a great opportunity to learn more about the contributions of African American women to the Space Race and to space exploration. The […]

Emily Greene Balch: Economist, Sociologist, Pacifist, and Nobel Laureate

The month of January marks the birthday of Emily Greene Balch (1867-1961), an American economist, sociologist, political scientist, and pacifist who rose to prominence during and after World War I. Balch began her career as a faculty member at Wellesley College in 1896 and became a full professor in 1913. As an academic, Balch studied […]

The School Garden Army in the First World War

This guest post was written by Constance Carter, the previous head of Science Reference who now volunteers here at the Library. As the seed catalogs replace the Christmas catalogs, our thoughts turn to gardens and gardening. In 2017, gardening occupies an important place in the 100th anniversary of World War I. The Library’s collection of […]

The Potato Transformed: Norwegian Lefse

This post was authored by Stephanie Marcus, Science Reference & Research Specialist, in the Science, Technology, and Business Division of the Library of Congress. She is also author of the blog post “Kebabs, Kabobs, Shish Kebabs, Shashlyk, and: Chislic.” I considered writing my December blog post about leeches and bloodletting, but decided that wouldn’t be […]

Fifty Years of Flight: L’Aérophile Collection

In the past, we have mentioned the L’Aérophile Collection in blog posts such as “Come Fly Away with Me, Courtesy of Wilbur and Orville” and “Flights of Fantasy and Fact: Man-made Wings in Literature and History.” However, there is much more to this collection. L’Aérophile Collection is devoted to the early years of aviation history […]

A.C. Gilbert’s Successful Quest to Save Christmas

When World War I broke out in 1914, President Wilson decided that the U.S. would not at that time join the Allies but would instead remain on the sidelines.  However, in 1916 he did establish the Council of National Defense which was composed of government officials that would coordinate resources and industry if necessary. When […]