Archive for January, 2015

Thousands of Early English Works Freely Available Online

For anyone interested in the history of the book, book production, book illustration, or how works were written back in the day, then the Early English Books Online site is for you. More than 25,000 titles printed in England between 1473 and 1700 are currently available; another 40,000+ will be added over the next few years. Each entry has complete bibliographical information along with a transcription of the work.(N.B. When using this site, please limit yourself to the “Early English Books Online” option listed under “Collections” at the bottom of the search page.) Peruse three different 17th century versions of Machiavelli’s The Prince; read dozens of petitions, letters, and articles by the Lord Protector, Oliver Cromwell; consult a 1687 version of Isaac Newton’s Principia; or look at various iterations of Geoffrey (or Jeffrey or Geffray) Chaucer’s works from 1477 to 1687 and watch as the language changes over the centuries. A marvelous resource for many disciplines.

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Online Primary Sources for American History: Maine

The Documentary history of the state of Maine is a 24-volume series published between 1869 and 1916. It reproduces petitions, letters, orders of council, patents, travel accounts, etc. ranging from the Viking “discovery” of Maine through the end of the 18th century. Volumes 14-20 contain material pertinent to the Revolutionary War; volumes 21-22 with the immediate postwar years; and volumes 23-24 are omnibus volumes holding material concerning the Native Americans of Maine. A peculiarity of this series is that the titles of the individual tomes do not indicate what they contain; they list the editor’s names, hence many volumes are entitled the “Baxter Manuscripts” referring to the editor, James Phinney Baxter, not the content.

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European Parliament Think Tank

We have listed many links to think tanks in previous entries, but this one deserves a special mention as it is the think tank of the European Parliament, a body that is directly elected by the European Union voters and therefore carries weight in the formulation of EU legislation and policy. Recent papers deal with security, biofuels, South Korea, and Russia; you can also browse by policy areas: alphabetical, EU committee, or theme. The papers range from briefings to in-depth analysis, and many have embedded links for additional information.

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2015 State of the Union Address

For a video and transcript of the speech, the Republican response, and the reactions of many in Congress, please access this C-SPAN site. A previous blog entry discussed the history of this address to Congress.

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Listen to Songs From the 1965 Selma to Montgomery March

This historic march to secure voting rights was led by Dr. King. Met with violence and hatred, the marchers fought back with songs. You can listen to these songs recorded from the march. (Free registration from Spotify is required, but it is a very easy process.)

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Online Primary Sources for American History: Maryland

In 900 volumes containing 471,000 documents, the ongoing Archives of Maryland Online provides a treasury of original sources. Documents include city directories, biographies, constitutional records, early state records back to the 1630s, selected newspapers, and session laws. A keyword search can be done of all 900 volumes or searching can be done by individual volume where an index is available. For those working in colonial/revolutionary history, these tomes will prove invaluable.

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Flu Vaccine Not as Effective This Year

That is according to the CDC in its report Early Estimates of Seasonal Influenza Vaccine Effectiveness — United States, January 2015. The overall effectiveness of this year’s vaccine was 23%, a figure rather on the low side. The report is technical in nature; this article from The New York Times is more layperson-friendly.

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