1. It’s National Moth Week — we offer these images in celebration. 

    Image one and two credits:
    The common moths of England / by the Rev. J.G. Wood ; with illustrations by E. Smith, T.W. Wood, and W.S. Coleman, 1870. Smithsonian Libraries via the Biodiversity Heritage Library. 

    Image three credit:
    Endpapers from The world of butterflies and moths. Klots, Alexander B. (Alexander Barrett), 1903-1989. Cornell University via HathiTrust.

    Check out more about Moth Week over at the American Museum of Natural History and find more great moth texts over at dp.la.


  2. John Herbert Dillinger (June 22, 1903–July 22, 1934) was an American gangster and bank robber in the Depression-era United States. His gang robbed two dozen banks and four police stations. Dillinger escaped from jail twice. He was also charged with, but never convicted of, the murder of an East Chicago, Indiana, police officer who shot at Dillinger during a gun fight, prompting Dillinger to return fire. It was Dillinger’s only homicide charge.(1)

    On Sunday, July 22, 1934, at 5pm, as “Public Enemy #1” (as Dillinger was called) left the Biograph Theater in Chicago, police officers yelled, “Stick’em up, Johnnie, we have you surrounded!” Shots were fired and four bullets hit Dillinger’s body, including the fatal bullet, which entered at the base of his neck and exited below his right eye. A crowd formed around the notorious gangster’s lifeless body, and several people dabbed handkerchiefs into his blood for souvenirs.(2)

    This FBI Wanted Poster of Dillinger, from the National Archives and Records Administration, was created after Dillinger’s last bank robbery, which took place a month before his death.

    Excerpted from (1) Wikipedia.com and (2) Biography.com.

    Find more information about gangsters at dp.la


  3. Today’s theme is Beauty Queens, organized by Lisa Gregory from the NC Digital Heritage Center.

    Whether you love them or hate them, there are over 600 images related to beauty pageants and related contests on dp.la. From Miss Vegetable Plate to Miss Universe, from the “Prettiest waitress” to homecoming queens in high school and college yearbooks, you can view the activities of women who won prizes for poise in all manner of local and national events.

    Image credits:

    Miss Wilmington 1948.” Photo by Hugh A. Morton. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center. 

    Fruit and Vegetable Association convention (Statler Hotel), 1953. University of Southern California Special Collections. 

    1958 Rhododendron QueenPhoto by Hugh A. Morton. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center. 

    Contests—Beauty—Bathing beauty contest (from the New York World’s Fair), 1939-1940. Manuscripts and Archives Division. The New York Public Library. 

    Miss Tobacco Pageant Participants, ca.1940s. Wilson County Public Library via the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center. 

    Miss Massachusetts. Photo by Leslie Jones, 1886-1967. Boston Public Library via Digital Commonwealth. Copyright (c) Leslie Jones. This work is licensed for use under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives License (CC BY-NC-ND). 

    Contests—Beauty—Prettiest Waitress and Most Handsome Bellboy contest winners  (from the New York World’s Fair), 1939-1940. Manuscripts and Archives Division. The New York Public Library. 


  4. We’re calling it a night for the last post in this week’s series on “What I did on my summer vacation.” These idyllic pictures of sunsets and moonlit scenes represent some of the most iconic images of summer vacation.

    Who among us hasn’t filled their camera trying to capture the true colors of a sunset over a mountain or reflected in the water? We’d love to see your (work appropriate) sunrise, sunset, or moonlit summer vacation photo. We know you’ve got one!

    These are just ten of the 50,000+ postcards in the DPLA collections. The images today come from Boston Public Library (via Digital Commonwealth), and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and University of North Carolina at Charlotte (via North Carolina Digital Heritage Center). 

    Love sunsets but you can’t get outside? Enjoy lots of them from your computer over at DPLA. 


  5. What we’re learning this week, as we celebrate summer vacation by highlighting some of the 50,000 postcards in the DPLA collections, is that advertising from the past can be charming, terrifying, or just plain confusing. Such is the case today as we head to the beach.

    These are the beaches of our dreams—and nightmares—where children and pets run free, sand dunes are soft and velvety, beautiful people fish by the seashore or play leapfrog in the sand, or screaming birds congregate, ships wreck, and whales die. 

    We’re left to wonder how, in some cases, we can get to these magical places, and why, in others, these postcards exist at all?

    Find more postcards and plan your next adventure at DPLA.

    Postcards highlighted today come from collections at the Boston Public Library (via Digital Commonwealth), University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (via North Carolina Digital Heritage Center), and the Heritage House Museum (via The Portal to Texas History).   


  6. Today’s take on this week’s theme, “What I did on my summer vacation,” sends us to exciting and far away places to visit with the kids.

    From petting zoos, to night rodeos, to shark hunting, to a monument to the Boy Scouts, there’s something for everyone in these ten postcards from the Boston Public Library.

    They are just a small fraction of the 50,000 postcards in the DPLA collections, of which about half come from BPL

    So, if you are out traveling with the kids this summer be sure to take them mini golfing, but don’t forget to stop at a monument or two along the way, too. That’ll make the trip really memorable.

    Love postcards? Check out lots more over at DPLA.


  7. This week’s theme is “What I did on my summer vacation.” We’re highlighting some of the amazing 50,000 postcards available through the DPLA. 

    Today, we’re looking at the variety of restaurant options available to the hungry traveller. The postcards above represent food options from California to New York and many stops in between with offerings as diverse as Italian in Nebraska, fried chicken in Texas, gourmet eating in Cincinnati, clams in NYC, a smorgasbord in Stow, and Cantonese in White Plaines. 

    Where will you eat on your summer vacation?

    All these postcards come from the awesome collections at the Boston Public Library, which come to DPLA via Digital Commonwealth. You should really check out the whole set. You have time—you’re on vacation!


  8. This week’s theme is “What I did on my summer vacation!” 

    We’ll be highlighting summer fun by digging through and spotlighting some of the 50,000 postcards in the DPLA collections.

    Let’s start out the week with pictures of the motels, resorts, and “motor lodges” of yesteryear.

    All the images today come from the Boston Public Library's collection of thousands of vacation postcards. The BPL collections come to DPLA via Digital Commonwealth.

    Stop back all week for more fun in the sun!


  9. Bug Week ends with a Shark-Week-like bang today by instilling in our followers a (possibly) overly ominous fear of mosquitoes.

    All of the posters above were published by the Domestic Operations Branch of the World War Two Office of War Information. The group of posters can be seen in their entirety here

    Want to know more about why we fear mosquitoes? Click over to DPLA to find resources on malaria, yellow fever, dengue, west nile, and other mosquito-born diseases


  10. Insects are our friends, and we’re reminding folks about that all this week on the DPLA Tumblr blog.

    These beautiful illustrations help conjure up memories of sitting lakeside on a summer day listening to the quiet buzzing of dragonflies’ wings as they skim along the top of the water. 

    From William John Lucas’s British dragonflies (Odonata), 1900. Courtesy the Smithsonian Libraries via the Biodiversity Heritage Library. (There are lots more illustrations—be sure to check them out.)

    Like bugs? Check out some more over at DPLA.