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September 25, 2019 @ 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm UTC Timezone
The Library Company of Philadelphia
1314 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107, Philadelphia
PA 19107
Library Company of Philadelphia

The Pioneer Americanists: Early Collectors, Dealers, and Bibliographers

Thursday, September 25

This presentation, based on the William L. Clements Library’s new book of the same title, is a captivating look at the lives and careers of eight generations of outstanding Americanists prior to 1900.  The lecture blends material from autobiographical and contemporary biographical sketches of White Kennett, Isaiah Thomas, James Lenox, Joseph Sabin, John Carter Brown, Lyman Copeland Draper, George Brinley Jr., and the other noteworthy specialists who created and nurtured the Americana field from the late seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries.  Illustrations from the collections of the Clements Library and other leading institutional archives provide a panoramic window on the early story of Americana appreciation, collecting and description.  Anyone with a professional or avocational interest in antiquarian Americana will find “The Pioneer Americanists” a treasury of information, enlightenment, and inspiration.

About J. Kevin Graffagnino     

J. Kevin Graffagnino has been the director of the University of Michigan’s William L. Clements Library since 2008.  He has also served as executive director of the Vermont and Kentucky state historical societies, as library director at the Wisconsin Historical Society, and as a Special Collections curator at the University of Vermont library.   Author or editor of 23 books and dozens of scholarly and popular articles, Dr. Graffagnino has delivered hundreds of lectures from Maine to California on American history, antiquarian books, and related topics.

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