Books on the Battlefield
During World War II, GIs battled boredom with novels provided by the Armed Service Division, raising questions about the “feminizing” effect of reading.
Like Tomatoes? Join the Club
Organizers of girls’ tomato clubs hoped that members would learn not only how to grow tomatoes, but how to build a better future for themselves.
Libraries and Pandemics: Past and Present
The 1918 influenza pandemic had a profound impact on how librarians do their work, transforming libraries into centers of community care.
A Fistful of Data: Information and the Cattle Industry
Beef barons needed cowboys less and bookkeepers more as the nineteenth century wore on.
What’s Behind the Pandemic Puzzle Craze?
Puzzles, or “dissected maps,” were invented in Georgian-era England, probably by a mapmaker named John Spilsbury in the early 1760s.
Preparing Libraries for Nuclear War
During the Cold War, America's libraries helped patrons prepare for nuclear war, from stocking reference materials to providing fallout shelters.
Eat the Rich: What Amazon and Whole Foods Tell Us about Internet-Era Eating
The internet has already transformed how Americans eat; the Amazon/Whole Foods deal is just the culmination of this transformation.