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Category: Biography

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Champion Cyclist “Major” Taylor

Posted by: Amber Paranick

Cyclist Marshall W. “Major” Taylor was the fastest man on earth.  He won thousands of dollars as a bicycle racer and became the most famous African-American in the United States. This was the golden age of cycling, and bicycle racing was a premier sporting event. Thousands of fans packed indoor velodromes to watch races and many …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

The 4th of Free Comic Books

Posted by: Megan Halsband

This year May the Fourth, a day to revel in all things Star Wars, coincides with Free Comic Book Day, an annual celebration of comic books! And on this May the Fourth, we’re particularly remembering Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew who died on April 30, 2019. He made Chewbacca one of the best-loved Star Wars characters. …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Gladys Pyle: American Trailblazer & “Ultra Modern” Woman

Posted by: Megan Halsband

This is a guest post by Valerie Haeder, a reference librarian in the Serial and Government Publications Division. South Dakota’s Gladys Pyle was the first woman elected to the South Dakota House and South Dakota’s first female U.S. Senator.  But she wouldn’t have cared about such distinctions as much as she did about getting things …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Happy International Women’s Day!

Posted by: Amber Paranick

This Friday, March 8, 2019, is International Women’s Day and today we return to our historical newspaper archives for stories featuring change-making women in newspapers searchable in Chronicling America, the Library’s freely available database that provides access to historic United States newspapers published between 1789 and 1963. As the Library’s digital collection grows to 15 …

Sissieretta Jones: World-Famous Black Soprano

Posted by: Heather Thomas

Sissieretta Jones sang for kings, presidents, and to audiences around the world, becoming the highest paid African-American entertainer of the late 19th century. She headlined at Carnegie Hall and was hailed as one of the greatest sopranos of her time, yet she never performed on the operatic stage. She was born Matilda Sissieretta Joyner in …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Remembering Comics Artist Marie Severin

Posted by: Megan Halsband

Legendary artist Marie Severin passed away a few weeks ago, and I wanted to take a moment to share some of her works that are available at the Library of Congress and highlight her decades-long career in the comic book industry. Marie began working as a colorist for EC (Entertaining Comics) in the 1950’s and …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Mary Pickford in the Press

Posted by: Amber Paranick

  Canadian-born Gladys Louise Smith was just 5 years old when her father died, plunging her family into poverty. Gladys’ mother, Charlotte, a classic stage mother of the day, pushed her young children– Lottie, Jack, and “Baby Gladys” — into the theatre in hopes of making money.  Gladys soon caught the eye of Broadway impresario, David …