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American Antiquarian Society Historical Periodicals Collection

American Antiquarian Society (AAS), the premier library documenting the life of America's people from the Colonial Era through the Civil War and Reconstruction, to provide digital access to the most comprehensive collection of American first-person accounts and periodicals published between 1684 and 1912. It’s a fascinating resource!

What are some of the major subject areas in the American Antiquarian Society Historical Periodicals Collection? While the list below is illustrative and not comprehensive, it provides an overview of some of the major subject areas in the collection.

  • Art, Architecture, and Music
    • Periodicals in this category include subjects such as fine arts and how to display them, catalogs of house plans, the decoration and furnishing a home in good taste and style, and manuals for architects and others in the building trades.
  • Books and Publishing
    • Titles in this category include reviews of books and drama, as well as catalogs and descriptions of newly published books both in America and abroad.
  • Business, Agriculture, and Industry
    • This broad category encompasses but is not limited to titles on finance and banking, better farming, stock and poultry raising, horticulture, mechanization and manufacture, railroads, mining, lumbering, canals, printing, and publishing.
  • Civil War and Slavery
    • This category contains an extensive collection of periodicals published during the Civil War and Reconstruction with a vast amount of content on the war and slavery not available outside the walls of the AAS.
  • Ethnic Groups (including African Americans and American Indians)
    • This category includes titles pertaining to the experiences of African Americans and American Indians, as well as other ethnic groups including but not limited to Jewish, German, Irish, Scandinavian, Welsh, French, Hispanic, Caribbean emigrants who settled in the United States.
  • Family and Society (including children, women, education)
    • This grouping contains magazines of a general sort for all members of the family on conduct of life, fashion and dress, deportment, and membership in social or fraternal organizations such as Freemasons and Odd Fellows.
  • History and Description
    • This grouping focuses on history as the subject matter. Titles in this group cover not only the United States, but also all of the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia.
  • Language and Literature
    • These literary magazines encompass a large and varied group of topics, including serialized novels, short stories, drama, poetry, essays, satire, wit and humor and folklore.
  • Law, Politics, and Government
    • Titles in this group include law reports, digests, works on crime, punishment, legal proceedings and other points of law, as well as information for police, sheriffs, and court officers.
  • Religion and Philosophy
    • Religious titles include magazines which focus on specific denominations as well as those which cover general works on theology, baptism, sin, conduct of life, Sunday schools, and Bible and missionary societies.
  • Revolutionary War
    • This category contains an exhaustive collection of periodicals published during the Revolutionary War.
  • Science and Medicine
    • This category includes titles relating to pure sciences such as chemistry, physics, astronomy, etc. as well as natural history, anthropology, archaeology, meteorology, botany, mineralogy, geology, weather, ethnology and zoology.