From early newspapers, samples of what our ancestors, in the first years of the republic, might have been reading. First, a few titles you could buy in New York, advertised in the Gazette of the United States, August 13, 1791
Gentleman’s Pocket Farrier
Smellie’s Philosophy of Natural History
Miss Murray’s Mentoria
Portion of an editorial:
America, from this period, begins a new era in her national existence —“The World Is All Before Her”—the wisdom and folly, the misery and prosperity of the EMPIRES, STATES, and KINGDOMS, which have had their day upon the great Theatre of Time, and are now no more, suggest the most important Mememtos—These with the rapid series of events, in which our Country has been so deeply interested, have taught the enlightened Citizens of the United States, that FREEDOM and GOVERNMENT—LIBERTY and LAWS, are inseparable. This Conviction has led to the adoption of the New Constitution; for, however VARIOUS the sentiments, respecting the MERITS of this system, all GOOD MEN are agreed in the necessity that exists, of an EFFICIENT FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.
A paper, therefore, established upon NATIONAL, INDEPENDENT, and IMPARTIAL PRINCIPLES, which shall take up the premised Articles, upon a COMPETENT PLAN, it is presumed, will be highly interesting, and meet with public approbation and patronage.
The Editor of this publication is determined to leave no avenue of information unexplored : —He solicits the assistance of Persons of leisure and abilities—which, united with his own assiduity, he flatters himself will render the Gazette of the United States not unworthy general encouragement——and is, with due respect, the public’s humble servant,
THE EDITOR (John Fenno) (November 25, 1789)
The Gazette of the United States was a Federalist paper, based in New York City, then America’s capital. It received funding (coordinated by) and contributions from Alexander Hamilton. (Information, the United States Library of Congress.)
The Monitor and Wilmington Repository. September 20, 1800
A feature piece:
Musquetoes enjoy successively two kinds of life, which appear very opposite, but which are also common to many other insects. It may be said, they are born fish, and latterly are winged inhabitants of the air. The male may be known from the female by the plumes on his head. Their time of love is generally when they are seen playing in the air. The female lays eggs on the surface of stagnated waters, to the number of 200 to 350, which stick together with a kind of glutinous substance, in form of a boat, with a head and stern, the small end upwards. They appear like little spots of lampblack, or small coals huddled together. From the bottom of the egg, hatches out a larva, which is a long body without legs; the large head hangs downwards, with the tail resting on the surface of the water, in which is a pipe and organ of respiration, and four fins on the opposite side. In this state it feeds on small animalculae, and grass; and then is very sprightly, for on the least agitation of the water, they dart instantly to the bottom, but are obliged to rise quickly to receive fresh air. They remain in this state two or three weeks, and then change into the Chyrsolids, in which state they do not eat. Their pipes for breathing are then transferred from the tail to the head, which represent horns. The tail is turned under quite to the head, like a lobster.
They live in this state three days, and when about to leave the watry element, they burst the shell at the top of the head, then get the two forelegs out and begin to dress, and hawl out the hinder legs and wings. The shell now represents a boat floating about, and if roughly agitated by wind, on the shaking of the water they are drowned, but if undisturbed [they spread their] wings and take their flight; abandon the waters to seek their nourishment in the blood of animals, and sacarine substances.
The best way to cure their bite, is to wet the parts bitten with saliva, and desist if possible from the itch of scratching. Volatile Alkali applied, is a remedy in this as well as in the bite of vipers. Lemon juice rubbed on our skin, it is said, will prevent musquetoes from being troublesome.
Notice is Hereby Given
To the TRUSTEES of the POORHOUSE of the County of Newcastle
That a meeting of the board will be held at the Poorhouse, on the first day of October next, at ten o’clock, A. M. at which time and place it is hoped the trustees will give punctual attendances. The Collectors of the Poor Tax for Newcastle County, are also notified that the 2nd sum of the payment became due the 7th day of this instant. It is hoped that they will, without delay, discharge the same; and those who are in arrears for old balances, and the first quarter of the current year with the Treasurer of the Board, need not expect any further indulgence. All persons having any legal demands against the Board for supplies furnished either by the orders of the Trustees, or by the order of the Overseer of the House, are required to render the same for settlement.
John Crow, Sec.
Aug. 29, 1800
War Department, August 4th, 1800
The commanding Officers of corps, detachments, posts, garrisons, and recruiting parties belonging to the military establishment of the United States, are to report to and receive orders from Brigadier General Wilkinson, in the city of Washington, and all officers on furlough are to report themselves to the same officer with all possible dispatch.
Secretary of War