Archive for August, 2009

Speak Softly… and Build a Big Ditch?

On August 15, 19Panama Canal_Viewing the locks14, the Panama Canal opened for business after a decade of construction and the deaths of countless workers (especially from malaria). Today, the canal sees thousands of ships pass through its gates a year, carrying a good chunk of the world’s exported goods.

Here are a few interesting resources on this modern engineering wonder:

Inside the Library:

The Canal Builders: Making America’s Empire at the Panama Canal by Julie Greene

Panama Fever: The Epic History of One of the Greatest Human Achievements of All Time – The Building of the Panama Canal by Matthew Parker

The Darkest Jungle: The True Story of the Darien Expedition and America’s Ill-Fated Race to Connect the Seas by Todd Balf

The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914 by David McCullough

A Man, A Plan, A Canal, Panama (video)

On the Web:

The Official Panama Canal Site

Wikipedia’s Panama Canal Entry

Panama Canal Museum

“From Ocean to Ocean: Through the Panama Canal” 1939 Video

Women’s Suffrage

Pre-Election Parade for Suffrage in NYC; October 23, 1915; Library of CongressThis week, 89 years ago, the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, granting voting rights to women. Many of us take this for granted today, but many women fought some very tough battles to gain this right. We’ve gathered together some resources that will help to illuminate this topic for those of us used to equality at the polls.


Failure is Impossible: Susan B. Anthony in Her Own Words by Lynn Sherr

Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony by Geoffrey C. Ward

Notorious Victoria: The Life of Victoria Woodhull, Uncensored by Mary Gabriel

Significant Sisters: The Grassroots of Active Feminism, 1839-1939 by Margaret Forster

Sisters: The Lives of America’s Suffragists by Jean H. Baker

Splintered Sisterhood: Gender and Class in the Campaign Against Woman Suffrage by Susan E. Marshall

A Very Dangerous Woman: Martha Wright and Women’s Rights by Sherry H. Penney and James D. Livingston

Women’s Suffrage in America by Elizabeth Frost-Knappman and Kathryn Cullen-DuPont

With Courage and Cloth: Winning the Fight for a Woman’s Right to Vote by Ann Bausum

Iron-Jawed Angels (DVD)


PBS: Not for Ourselves Alone

The Susan B. Anthony Center for Women’s Leadership

Women’s Suffrage – History Channel

Women’s Suffrage – Library of Congress

Women’s Suffrage – Wikipedia

Great Photography

Construction of first Twin Falls/Jerome Bridge, 1927Not exactly sure what inspired the theme of this post – it just seems like I keep seeing great photography books and websites.

Photography is still a young art form, in spite of being almost 200 years old, and I think it’s great that it’s becoming easier for us all to be artists in our own ways. But there is definitely something to be said for the work of “masters” who often inspire and educate us with their works.


Annie Leibovitz at Work edited by Sharon DeLano

Ansel Adams at 100 by John Szarkowski

The Collection of Alfred Stieglitz: Fifty Pioneers of Modern Photography by Weston J. Naef

Daring to Look: Dorothea Lange’s Photographs and Reports from the Field by Anne Whitson Spirn

In Focus: National Geographic Greatest Portraits

Mathew Brady’s Illustrated History of the Civil War, 1861-1865 by Benson J. Lossing

Planet Earth: As You’ve Never Seen It Before by Alistair Fothergill

Picturing the Century: One Hundred Years of Photography from the National Archives by Bruce I. Bustard

Steichen’s Legacy: Photographs, 1895-1973 edited by Joanna Steichen

Vanity Fair’s Hollywood


The Bigger Picture – A great photography blog from the Smithsonian

Library of Congress – The LOC’s online catalog of prints and photographs – Access to some of Life magazine’s greatest images

National Geographic – Get some unique wallpaper or browse the magazine’s collection of photos of over 100 years of publication.

Shorpy – A fun, often enlightening photography blog featuring photos prior to the 1950s from all sorts of government and personal collections.

TFPL also has a fascinating archive of photos from the beginnings of the Magic Valley. Come in and check out our database!