The Editor's Choice

Welcome to the blog of the editorial team at Adam Matthew Digital. Here we will bring you snippets from the fascinating collections we have the privilege of handling on a daily basis, as well as posts about our travels to various archives and conferences across the world.

Also featured are special guest blogs by leading academics on their personal collection highlights. Please subscribe to recieve new blog posts direct to your inbox.

No Front Line in Sight: Reporting on Merrill's Marauders
12 April 2019

With the upcoming publication of the second module of Service Newspapers of World War Two, we find a report in Yank: The Army Newspaper from Sgt. Dave Richardson. Richardson spent over three months in the dense Burmese jungle fighting alongside men of the 5307th Composite Unit (Provisional).

Bear ahoy! 6 Moments of Soviet Kitsch
05 April 2019

This week Culture & Society, the third and final module of Socialism on Film, launches. Comprising documentaries produced in states such as the Soviet Union, China, Cuba and Vietnam, it touches on themes including the arts, sport, everyday life, youth and education, providing Western audiences an unparalleled insight into life behind the Iron Curtain. Rigorous and informative documentaries focussing on healthcare, women’s work, environmentalism and politics can also be found in this collection, but today, we hope you’ll forgive us a few moments of glorious kitsch.

Half a Century of Sport: Soviet sport on film
03 April 2019

Sport has many powers. It gives people purpose. It keeps us fit and healthy. It can unite a population and create waves of nationalism. And it can also be the answer to the question: how can a country as large as the Soviet Union raise its life expectancy from thirty-two years to nearly seventy within fifty years? According to the Soviet film Half a Century of Sport, credit for this remarkable achievement belongs to the sports program that was part of everyday life for millions of Soviet citizens.

A special guest blog by Dr Erin Redihan, Worcester State University.

News out of Nothing: POW Newspapers
29 March 2019

I think most would agree whatever the world’s current problems, a lack of news is not one of them.

Taxing Times: The Stamp Act of 1765
22 March 2019

On Friday 22 March 1765, the British Parliament voted to pass one of the most incendiary and politically damaging pieces of legislation in its history - the Stamp Act.

20 March 2019

In her Annals of a Publishing House (1897), the English writer Margaret Oliphant refers to George Eliot, otherwise known as Mary Anne Evans, as “the woman of genius” who occupies the space of being “one of the great writers of her time”. Eliot’s reputation continues to live on over 120 years later.

12 March 2019

Today marks the 75th anniversary of the beginning of the third battle of Monte Cassino; the battle which marked the penultimate stage in the Allies’ attempts to break through the German stronghold in the Gustav line and proceed to Rome.

International Women's Day: Celebrating women
08 March 2019

International Women's Day is celebrated around the world, recognising women's achievements and promoting gender equality. It has working class beginnings, emerging from the strike of 1908 in New York, where 15,000 garment workers marched to demand workers rights and to protest their difficult working conditions.

Take a bow, the Front of House staff at Shakespeare’s Globe
07 March 2019

In the theatrical experiment that is the reconstruction of Shakespeare’s Globe, it’s said that the audience is one of the most important discoveries. In attempting to recreate the playing conditions of Shakespeare’s time, the Globe has up to 700 ‘groundlings’ in the uncovered yard that separates the stage from three tiers of seating.

Our Friend Angela Davis
01 March 2019

Spring has sprung here at Adam Matthew and as February draws to an end and March gets underway, we find ourselves dodging daffodils and rain showers at every turn. As well as a change of season, March 1st marks the close of (US) Black History Month and the dawn of Women’s History Month, two movements designed to promote figures marginalised by the traditional top-down historical narrative. With this in mind, it seems timely to share an intriguing propaganda piece about the African American woman and “enemy of the state” who toured Leonid Brezhnev’s USSR at the height of the Cold War.

Romancing the Stone: Alchemy and Dr John Dee in Medieval and Early Modern Studies
21 February 2019

This week sees the release of Research Source: Medieval and Early Modern Studies , a rich resource covering topics such as the Black Death, the restoration of the English Monarchy and the Glorious Revolution. One of the most interesting and certainly intriguing collections included is Renaissance Man: The Books and Manuscripts of John Dee.

Selling Romance: Valentine's Day and the American Store
15 February 2019

This week I delved into Trade Catalogues and the American Home, to explore how the concept of Valentine’s Day was sold to consumers in America over one hundred years ago.

“All the world’s a stage”: diplomatic entertainment in inter-war Japan
08 February 2019

In 1929, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester travelled to Japan to invest Emperor Hirohito with the Order of the Garter and in honour of the visit, the prince was treated to a presentation of a Kabuki drama by the famous Kabuki-za theatre in Tokyo. Browsing through Foreign Office Files for Japan, 1919-1930: Japan and Great Power Status, the newly released third section of Adam Matthew’s Foreign Office Files for Japan, 1919-1952 collection, I came across a programme prepared specifically for the drama’s performance for Prince Henry.

How Mary Queen of Scots was remembered within Victorian entertainment
01 February 2019

On this day in 1587 Queen Elizabeth I signed the death warrant of her cousin, Mary Stuart, who was subsequently executed on February 8th of the same year. By doing so Elizabeth ensured Mary would be immortalised in her death as a martyr of the Catholic faith, and so would their rivalry for the English throne. 

Part 2: The Columbia River Maps and Meteorological Calculations of David Douglas: An Archival Discovery
29 January 2019

This is the second in a two-part blog in which David G. Lewis, PhD, Adjunct Professor of Anthropology and Native Studies at Oregon State University, tells the story of discovering some previously unknown documents from Pacific Northwest explorer David Douglas within Adam Matthew Digital's collection Age of Exploration.

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