Stainforth Blog

“Monument to Our Matrons,” short fiction inspired by the Stainforth library’s auction in 1867

By Michael W. Harris, published in Plumbago issue 5 (Jan. 2019) I settle into my chair at the esteemed auction house of Sotheby, Wilkinson and Hodge to witness the selling off, piecemeal, of the careful and thoughtful accumulation of the better part of my life. No novice to London collecting circles, I had previously cultivated passions for both … Continue reading “Monument to Our Matrons,” short fiction inspired by the Stainforth library’s auction in 1867

Adah Isaacs Menken

How serendipitous that on a day where I mulled over how Stainforth identified American women writers, by day’s end I should learn of someone new, thanks to Reverend Stainforth.  Adah Isaacs Menken, an American actress and poet (1835-1868), was known to this British book collector, evidence of which is in his catalog. She identified one … Continue reading Adah Isaacs Menken

Another woman of color

I spoke too soon and take back my earlier snarky and wistful comments. Our man Stainforth had in his collection a piece written by Adah Isaacs Menken who was a nineteenth-century actress, artist and poet. I am not familiar with her story and will research this further, but her VIAF record identifies her as an … Continue reading Another woman of color

Identify and Identity

In continuing name-authority research for Stainforth writers who do not have VIAF records, I ponder how Reverend Stainforth identified American women writers to include in his private library.  No doubt the book dealers with whom he worked recommended new authors and titles on a regular basis, yet he had his favorite reference tools which evince … Continue reading Identify and Identity

The Grecians. A Tragedy, by Mrs. Vaughan (1824), with Stainforth bookplate

While fixing typos in our transcription data, I stumbled upon yet another Stainforth bookplate in Google Books in a digital copy of The Grecians, a play by Mrs. Vaughan (1824). The bookplate indicates that Francis Stainforth owned this exact copy of the book, and so far we have identified around 300 of these. There are … Continue reading The Grecians. A Tragedy, by Mrs. Vaughan (1824), with Stainforth bookplate

Ann Yearsley’s Library Catalog

My co-editor, Debbie Hollis, recently shared with me Ann Yearsley’s library catalog, which one can access through Gale/ECCO. Go to Ann Yearsley’s Library Catalog My current institution doesn’t subscribe to ECCO, and I took this incredible (and expensive) database for granted at both CU-Boulder, where I did my PhD, and at Dartmouth College, where I … Continue reading Ann Yearsley’s Library Catalog

Emerging Voices, an Introduction

We’re happy to introduce a new series of essays called “Emerging Voices,” written solely by undergraduate students working on authors and titles in the Stainforth library catalog. The editors are particularly excited to share these essays because not only do they offer valuable new insights into lesser-known titles and women authors between the sixteenth and … Continue reading Emerging Voices, an Introduction

Blending Our Binaries Since 1809

Essay by Danna D’Esopo Dr. Leuner ENGL 144G 28 May 2018 There is repetition throughout human history of categorizing ideologies into binaries. Socially, we have been using binaries for as long as we have existed by categorizing ourselves into the genders of either “male” or “female”. Politically, this is seen in the history of America’s … Continue reading Blending Our Binaries Since 1809

Women’s Lib and the Chastity Police: Explorations of Female Friendship in The Platonic Wife (1765), by Elizabeth Griffith

Essay by Catherine Newcomb Dr. Leuner ENGL 144G May 16, 2018 The Platonic Wife, a play written by British author Elizabeth Griffith in 1765, explores themes of female oppression and the patriarchal usage of women for economic advancement through the story of the separation of a man and woman, Lord and Lady Frankland (their first … Continue reading Women’s Lib and the Chastity Police: Explorations of Female Friendship in The Platonic Wife (1765), by Elizabeth Griffith