Thursday, November 9, 2017

World War I and America: Three Events

Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I, the Dick Smith Library honors those who fought and shares American experiences with three events:

WWI Film Night: A Soldier’s Experience, is tonight, Thursday, November 9, at 7 p.m., in Room 107 of the Nursing Building on the Stephenville campus.  The film, All Quiet on the Western Front, based on the book by Erich Maria Remarque, will be shown and snacks will be provided.  The 1930 film highlights the ordinary soldier’s experience and provides a realistic and harrowing account of World War I.  Free popcorn and drinks will be provided.

A ceremony to honor all veterans will take place on Friday, November 10, at 10 a.m. at the Military Memorial near the Howell Education Building.  Artificial red poppies (a symbol of remembrance since WWI ended in 1918) donated by the Texas VFW Auxiliary, will be distributed, along with coffee and donuts.

A discussion panel of scholars will look at American experiences of World War I at noon on Friday, November 10, in Business Building, Room 177.  A free lunch from Big O's will be provided.

Panelists and their topics are:
• Dr. Marcy Tanter, Tarleton, professor of English—Participation and experience of women in the war;
• Dr. Mattie Fitch, Tarleton, assistant professor of history—French portrayal and perceptions of Americans fighting in Europe; and
• Dr. Kenyon Zimmer, University of Texas at Arlington, associate professor of history—wartime and post-war civil liberty violations of citizens and immigrants.

These programs are part of World War I and America, a two-year national initiative of the Library of America presented in partnership with The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, the National World War I Museum and Memorial, and other organizations, with a generous grant from The National Endowment for the Humanities that was awarded to the Dick Smith Library.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Native American Heritage Month

November is Native American Heritage Month. This is the time to recognize the experiences and contributions of the first Americans. Beginning in 1986, November 23-30 was designated "American Indian Week." In 1990, it was elevated to a month long recognition. November was chosen to coincide with the end of the traditional harvest season and Thanksgiving.

Native American population by county. 
According to the 2010 Census there were 5,220,579 people of American Indian or Alaskan Native heritage residing in the US that year. That is 1.7% of the total population and a 26.7% increase since the 2000 census.

Timeline of Native American History
Click the links below to find library and online resources about each topic. 
Dates listed before 1492 are estimates, and shouldn't be considered exact. 

15,000 BC - Ancestors of Native Americans migrated from Asia to North America via the Beringia land bridge during the last ice age. In recent decades archaeological and DNA research has found evidence that:
  • humans may have arrived in the Americas thousands of years before 15,000 BC, 
  • they may have come by boat as well as overland, and
  • some may have arrived via a European route.
Many Native Americans do not accept the Beringia Strait Theory as most Native American tribal origin stories, passed down orally for generations, do not provide evidence for such a journey.
New Evidence for the Pleistocene Peopling of the Americas by Alan Lyle Bryan
Quest for the Origins of the First Americans by E. James Dixon

9000 BC - Beginning of the Clovis Culture. Named from the distinctive spear points first discovered near Clovis, New Mexico in the 1930s but have since been found across North America.
Across Atlantic Ice: The Origin of America's Clovis Culture by Dennis J. Stanford
Clovis Blade Technology by Michael B. Collins
New Perspectives on the First Americans by Bradley Thomas Lepper

3500 BC - The oldest mound complex, Watson Brake, was built near modern day Monroe, Louisiana. The Mound Building cultures created a variety of mound complexes throughout the Midwest and Southeast United States, including eastern Texas.
Native Americans before 1492: The Moundbuilding Centers of the Eastern Woodlands by Lynda Shaffer
Mound Builders of Ancient America by Robert Silverberg
Serpent Mound in Southwest Ohio.
By Timothy A. Price and Nichole I.; uploaded by the authors. (Part of the archive Image:Serpent Mound.jpg) [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or CC BY 2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons
2000 BC - Native Americans began creating pictographs and petroglyphs around Seminole Canyon, Texas. Many examples of Indian Rock Art are located across the United States.
Painters in Prehistory: Archaeology and Art of the Lower Pecos Canyonlands by Harry J. Shafer
The Petroglyphs and Pictographs of Missouri by Carol Diaz-Granados
Rock Art of the Lower Pecos by Carolyn E. Boyd
Rock Art of the Upper Ohio Valley by James L. Swauger
Petroglyph in Panther Cave near Del Rio, TX.
By Maekju (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
700 - Cahokia, the largest Native American city north of Mexico, was constructed. It was abandoned around 1250. It is located in southwest Illinois across the Mississippi river from present day Saint Louis, Missouri.
The Cahokia Mounds by Warren King Moorehead
The Ascent of Chiefs: Cahokia and Mississippian Politics in Native North America by Timothy R. Pauketat

1200 - Ancestral Puebloans (also known as the Anasazi, but contemporary Puebloans do not prefer this term) built the Cliff Palace located in Southwest Colorado. It was abandoned by 1300.
Anasazi Places: The Photographic Vision of William Current by Jeffrey Cook
The Lost World of the Old Ones: Discoveries in the Ancient Southwest by David Roberts
Mound Builders & Cliff Dwellers by Time-Life Books
The Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado.
By Ken Lund from Las Vegas, Nevada, USA [CC BY-SA 2.0 (],
via Wikimedia Commons
1450 - The Cayuga, Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, and Seneca tribes formed the Iroquois Confederacy, with a representative form of government that may have influenced the creators of the US Constitution. The Tuscarora tribe joined in 1722. Early French explorers called them Iroquois, they call themselves Haudenosaunee. The date of their founding is disputed. Some say it may have been as early as 1150. The Haudenosaunee believe their confederacy has existed since time immemorial.
The Great Law and the Longhouse: a Political History of the Iroquois Confederacy by William N. Fenton
The Iroquois and the Founding of the American Nation by Donald A. Grinde
The Ordeal of the Longhouse: the Peoples of the Iroquois League in the era of European colonization by Daniel K. Richter
Treaty of Canandaigua 1794: 200 Years of Treaty Relations between the Iroquois Confederacy and the United States by Irving Powless

1527-43 - Spanish explorations offer early accounts of various Native American tribes in southeast and southwest US. Conflicts, animals, plants, and diseases brought by these explorers had a dramatic impact on local tribes.
The De Soto Chronicles: the Expedition of Hernando de Soto to North America in 1539 - 1543 by Lawrence A. Clayton et. al.
Documents of the Coronado Expedition, 1539 - 1542 by Richard Flint & Shirley Cushing Flint
We Came Naked and Barefoot: the Journey of Cabeza de Vaca across North America by Alex D. Krieger

1598 - Spanish colonized New Mexico and violently suppressed the Pueblos at Acoma.
The Habit of Empire by Paul Horgan
The Origin Myth of Acoma Pueblo by Edward Proctor Hunt

1607 - English colonized Jamestown, Virginia and came into contact with Pocahontas and her father Powhatan (his name was Wahunsunacock, he is known as Powhatan because of an early English misunderstanding. Powhatan is the name of the people he governed).
The Journals of Captain John Smith: a Jamestown Biography by John Smith
Powhatan's World and Colonial Virginia: a Conflict of Cultures by Frederic W. Gleach
The True Story of Pocahontas by Linwood Custalow
Portrait of Pocahontas made in 1616.
Simon van de Passe [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
1609-14 - First of three Anglo-Powhatan Wars between English settlers at Jamestown and the Powhatan Confederacy.
The Divided Dominion: Social Conflict and Indian Hatred in Early Virginia by Ethan A. Schmidt
Lethal Encounters: Englishmen and Indians in Colonial Virginia by Alfred A. Cave

1620 - English settlers established Plymouth Colony and encountered Squanto (Tisquantum), an English speaking member of the Wampanoag tribe. His assistance was essential for the success of the colony.
A Great & Godly Adventure: the Pilgrims & the Myth of the First Thanksgiving by Godfrey Hodgson
Squanto and the First Thanksgiving by Eric Metaxas
Squanto, Friend of the Pilgrims by Clyde Robert Bulla

1636-37 - English settlers in Massachusetts defeat the Pequots in the Pequot War.
A Brief History of the Pequot War by John Mason
The Pequot War by Alfred A. Cave

1675-76 English settlers defeated the Wampanoags, and their allies, in King Philip's War.
Buried in Shades of Night: Contested Voices, Indian Captivity, and the Legacy of King Philip's War by Billy J. Stratton
King Philip's War: Colonial Expansion, Native Resistance, and the end of Indian Sovereignty by Daniel R. Mandell

1680 - Pueblo Indians revolt against Spanish rule in New Mexico. The Spanish returned in 1691.
The Pueblo Revolt: The Secret Rebellion that Drove the Spaniards out of the Southwest by David Roberts
What Caused the Pueblo Revolt of 1680? by David J. Weber

1729-30 - Natchez tribe resisted French colonization in Louisiana. The French retaliated with a war of extinction.
French-Indian Relations on the Southern Frontier, 1699-1762 by Patricia Dillon Woods
Natchez Country: Indians, Colonists and the Landscapes of Race in French Louisiana by George Edward Milne

1776-83 - During the American Revolution, some Native American tribes sided with the US while most sided with the British or remained neutral.
Forgotten Allies: the Oneida Indians and the American Revolution by Joseph T. Glatthaar
Joseph Brant, 1743-1807, Man of Two Worlds by Isabel Thompson Kelsay
Portrait of Joseph Brant (Thayendanegea) painted in 1776. Mohawk military leader who led British attacks against Americans during the American Revolution. He moved to Canada after the war was over. George Romney [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.
1778 - United States government signed its first treaty with a Native American tribe, the Delawares.

1790 - Congress passes the Intercourse Act, which states that ownership of Indian land cannot be transferred from tribes unless agreed to by a treaty with the federal government.

1790-95 - United States defeated the Miami tribe and their allies for control of Ohio. Native Americans forced to give up their claims to most of Ohio through the Treaty of Greenville.
President Washington's Indian War: the Struggle for the Old Northwest, 1790-1795 by Wiley Sword

1804-06 - Sacagawea, a Shoshone woman, assisted Lewis and Clark in their exploration of the American west.
Interpreters with Lewis and Clark: the Story of Sacagawea and Toussaint Charbonneau by W. Dale Nelson

1807-11 - Shawnee brothers Tecumseh and Tenskwatawa created a confederacy of northwest Indian tribes in Indiana, to form a united resistance against US encroachment on their lands. Their forces were defeated at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811.
Tecumseh and the Quest for Indian Leadership by R. David Edmunds

1813-14 - US forces, under the command of Andrew Jackson, defeated the Creek Indians in Alabama.
Tohopeka: Rethinking the Creek War and the War of 1812 by Kathryn E. Holland Braund

1817-18 - First of three wars between the US and the Seminole tribe in Florida.
The Seminole Wars: America's Longest Indian Conflict by John Missall and Mary Lou Missall

1821 - Sequoyah created a syllabary for the Cherokee language. You can learn the Cherokee language via our library's subscription to the Mango Languages database.
Sequoyah: the Cherokee Man Who Gave his People Writing by James Rumford
Sequoyah: Inventor of the Cherokee Written Language by Diane Shaughnessy
Portrait of Sequoyah (ᏍᏏᏉᏯ) and his syllabary in 1836.
Charles Bird King [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
1824 - The Bureau of Indian Affairs was created.
The Indian Office: Growth and Development of an American Institution, 1865 - 1900 by Paul Stuart
The Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880 by Edward E. Hill

1830 - Congress passed the Indian Removal Act.
1831 - Supreme Court ruled that Indian tribes are domestic dependent nations in Cherokee Nation v. Georgia.
1832 - Supreme Court ruled that state laws do not apply to Indian tribes in Worcester v. Georgia
1836 - Removal of Creek Indians.
1838 - Cherokee removed via the infamous Trail of Tears.
The Cherokee Removal: a Brief History with Documents by Theda Perdue
Indian Removal: the Emigration of the Five Civilized Tribes of Indians by Grant Foreman
The Politics of Indian Removal: Creek Government and Society in Crisis by Michael D. Green
The Trail of Tears and Indian Removal by Amy H. Sturgis

1851 - United States began the Reservation System to confine Native American tribes to designated tracts of land.
Indians and Indian Agents: the Origins of the Reservation System in California, 1849-1852 by George Harwood Phillips

1864 - Colorado militia attacked a peaceful encampment of Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians massacring approximately 200 to 300 people including women and children.
The Sand Creek Massacre by Stan Hoig

1866-68 - Lakota (also known as the Sioux), Northern Cheyenne, and Arapaho forces defeated the US military in Red Cloud's War. The Treaty of Fort Laramie of 1868 formally ended the war and guaranteed Lakota ownership of the Black Hills.
Crazy Horse: a Lakota Life by Kingsley M. Bray
Red Cloud: Warrior-Statesman of the Lakota Sioux by Robert W. Larson
Picture of Red Cloud, Oglala Lakota chief, taken in 1880.
By Charles Milton Bell ( [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons 
1871 - Congress passed the Indian Appropriations Act ending the treaty system. After passage of this act relations between federal government and Indian tribes were managed through acts of Congress rather than treaties.

1874-75 - US defeated the Comanche in the Red River War, which was fought largely in the Texas panhandle. 
Battles of the Red River War: Archaeological Perspectives on the Indian Campaign of 1874 by J. Brett Cruse
Comanche Empire by Pekka Hämäläinen
Quanah Parker, Comanche Chief by William T. Hagan

1876-77 - US defeated Lakota and their allies in the Great Sioux War, even though Sitting Bull led the Lakota in victory against General George Custer at the Battle of Little Big Horn
Battles and Skirmishes of the Great Sioux War, 1876-1877: the Military View by Jerome A. Greene
Lakota and Cheyenne: Indian Views of the Great Sioux War, 1876-1877 by Jerome A. Greene
The Last Days of George Armstrong Custer: the True Story of the Battle of Little Bighorn by Thom Hatch
Sitting Bull and the Paradox of Lakota Nationhood by Gary Clayton Anderson

1877 - US defeated the Nez Percé
Chief Joseph & the Flight of the Nez Perce: the Untold Story of an American Tragedy by Kent Nerburn

1886 - US defeated the Apache.
The Apache Wars: the Hunt for Geronimo by Paul Andrew Hutton
Geronimo: the Man, His Time, His Place by Angie Debo

1887 - Congress passed the Dawes Severalty Act. It ended tribal ownership of land and provided tracts to individual Native Americans instead. The result was a drastic reduction of Indian land, much of which was sold to white settlers.
Poster advertising Indian land for sale in 1911.
By United States Department of the Interior [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
1890 - Increasing popularity of Ghost Dance religion caused fear among the white community, which culminated at a massacre of approximately 150 Lakota men, women, and children by the US military at Wounded Knee.
American Carnage: Wounded Knee, 1890 by Jerome A. Greene
The Ghost Dance: Origins of Religion by Weston La Barre
The Lakota Ghost Dance of 1890 by Rani-Henrik Andersson
Wounded Knee Massacre by Marty Gitlin
        - According to the National Archives Records of Right webpage: "To encourage assimilation into white society, in 1890 the government began requiring Native American children to attend schools that were often hundreds of miles away from reservations."
American Indian Education: a History by Jon Allan Reyhner and Jeanne M. Oyawin Eder
Pipestone: My Life in an Indian Boarding School by Adam Fortunate Eagle

1893 - Charles Curtis, of Kansas, became the first Native American to serve in Congress. He was a member of the Kaw tribe. In 1907, he became the first Native American to serve in the Senate, and in 1929 he became the first and only Native American to serve as Vice President of the United States.

1917-18 - Approximately 12,000 Native Americans served in the US military during World War I.
American Indians in World War I: at Home and at War by Thomas A. Britten
North American Indians in the Great War by Susan Applegate Krouse

1924 - Congress passed the Indian Citizenship Act, which granted citizenship to all Native Americans born within the territorial limits of the United States.
Charles Curtis, member of the Kaw Nation, served as Vice President of the United States from 1929-1933.
By Strauss Peyton, Kansas City, Missouri [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
1941-45 - Approximately 25,000 Native Americans served in the US military during World War II, such as the Navajo Code Talkers.
American Indians and World War II: Toward a New Era in Indian Affairs by Alison R. Bernstein
Code Talker Stories by Laura Tohe
The Comanche Code Talkers of World War II by William C. Meadows

1953 - Congress passed a resolution adopting policy of terminating tribal sovereignty.

1968 - The American Indian Movement (AIM) was founded to promote Native American civil rights.
1969-71 Native American activists seized control of the abandoned federal prison Alcatraz.
1973 - Approximately 300 armed Native American activists seized control of Wounded Knee to protest poor living conditions and corrupt officials on the reservation. This led to a 71 day standoff with federal officials which led to the deaths of two activists.
1975 - AIM member Leonard Peltier convicted of murdering two federal agents in a controversial trial.
Laud Hawk: the United States versus the American Indian Movement by Kenneth S. Stern
The Trial of Leonard Peltier by James W. Messerschmidt
Where White Men Fear to Tread: the Autobiography of Russell Means by Russell Means
Wounded Knee 1973: a Personal Account by Stanley David Lyman
         - Indian Self-Determination and Education Act of 1975 granted tribes money to administer federal programs, which began the reversal of the termination policy.

1985 - Wilma Mankiller became the first woman elected chief of the Cherokee Nation.
Beloved Women: the Political Lives of LaDonna Harris and Wilma Mankiller by Sarah Eppler Janda
The Reader's Companion to U.S. Women's History by Wilma Pearl Mankiller

1988 - Congress passed the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.
Indian Gaming: Tribal Sovereignty and American Politics by W. Dale Mason

1994 - Congress passed the Tribal Self Governance Act.

2009 - The Cobell v. Salazar case was settled. Representatives of several Native American tribes sued the federal government in 1996 for mismanagement of Indian lands and funds. In 2009, the federal government agreed to settle the case and pay over $3 billion in damages.

2016 - Native Americans, concerned about contamination of their water at the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, protested the location of the Dakota Access oil pipeline.
Map of Indian reservations, and other designated areas, as of the 2000 Census.
Created by the US Census Bureau [Public Domain]
Tarleton State University's Dick Smith Library has a wealth of books and other resources relevant to Native American history and culture. Such as these titles: 
1491: New Revelations of the Americas before Columbus by Charles C. Mann
American Indian Food by Linda Murray Berzok
American Indians in U.S. History by Roger L. Nichols
Carvings and Commerce: Model Totem Poles, 1880-2010 by Michael D. Hall
Daily Life During the Indian Wars by Clarissa W. Confer
The Forced Removal of American Indians from the Northeast by David W. Miller
Indian Slavery in Colonial America by Alan Gallay
Malinche, Pocahontas, and Sacagawea: Indian Women as Cultural Intermediaries and National Symbols by Rebecca K. Jager
Native North American Art by Janet Catherine Berlo
Peyote Religion: a History by Omer Call Stewart
The Texas Indians by David La Vere
White Man's Paper Trail: Grand Councils and Treaty-Making on the Central Plains by Stan Hoig

If you need assistance finding resources on this, or any other topic, then please contact us at 254-968-9249 or

Friday, November 3, 2017

Part III: Upper Level


Part III: Upper Level
by: Yeidi Rios

A lot has happened at our library since I last wrote about the lower level. It gives me great joy to include in this post a recently assembled new space created for our students. This will be the last post of a series of posts designed to describe the different areas of the Dick Smith Library. The only floor left to discuss is the upper level.
The upper level counts with much more amenities and little private sections for maximum productivity. For starters, as soon as you go up the stairs there is a lounging area near the office, a copy station including a recently acquired color printer, 15 more desktops, a laptop vending machine, and the Maker Spot. This last room is one of our newest additions. The Maker Spot promotes invention, creation and exploration through the use of modern technologies with the assistance of professional staff. Among the many things this room includes, is a 3D printer, 3D scanner, Go Pros, and computer development kits for the students to work on. The rest of the upper level includes more study areas with comfy chairs, study tables, study rooms and group study rooms. Regarding this last one, I can happily inform my readers that we now count with 5 new collaboration tables equipped with computers and big screen monitors. 
The Dick Smith Library has many more resources available to everyone that forms part of the Tarleton Community. To learn more about the library’s resources remember you can always visit any of our reference desks located in all three floors. Our staff is made up of well-prepared library professionals that can assist you with all your informational needs. I hope that by now you find yourself more familiar with the library’s resources. Hope to see you soon!

Monday, October 30, 2017

International Game Week Oct. 29-Nov.5

The Dick Smith Library has several fun events planned for International Game Week. 
  • Located at the circulation desk students can stop by to submit their guess to how many starbursts they believe are in the jar. The winner will be contacted by Nov. 6 and gets the jar of starbursts as the prize.

  • Tuesday, Oct. 31 from 3pm-4pm located in the Multipurpose room there will be 2 rounds of Tarleton Trivia in which a prize from each round will be given away.

  • Thursday, Nov. 2 from 4pm-8pm located in the Multipurpose room students are welcome to come hang out and game out. Several games such as: Buzzword, Clue, Apples to Apples, Yahtzee, puzzles, and playing cards will be available for students to play with their friends. This is a come and go event and students are welcome to bring their own favorite game to play.

  • Make sure to check out our Facebook page "Tarleton State University Libraries" for fun game facts throughout the week.

Good luck & have fun!

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Halloween Safety Tips for College Students

Image result for halloween images free clip art

Halloween is all about the things that go bump in the night….and seeing the light of morning November 1st. To help ensure your frightful night is a raging success, I’ve compiled a list of the internet’s best safety tips specifically geared for college students:

  • ·         Watch your food and drinks. Don’t accept anything edible from people you don’t know well.  If you have to set your drink or plate down to say, head to the bathroom, assume it is trash when you get back. If you’re playing a game of pool or are otherwise engaged elsewhere while consuming, ask a trusted friend to watch your goods when your back is turned. Better yet, make a pact with your friends before heading out for the night to babysit each other’s food and drink.

  • ·         Wear a reasonable costume. I’m not talking about the skimpy vs conservative debate. If your costume impedes walking, running or seeing, it’s not safe. Lots of things go down Halloween night, including pranks of all sorts. Pranks can go wrong, so make sure you can get out of a situation quickly and safely. High heels, long leg-wrapping dresses, even accessories can tangle up your limbs. Wigs,fake glasses and overflowing hats can prevent you from seeing. Make sure your costume is impressive and functional.

  • ·         Consider sharing. Location services, that is. Share your phone’s location temporarily with a good friend for the night. Also, make sure your phone is on full battery, and if possible, bring a charger. Keep your phone on all night, and don’t set it down anywhere.

  • ·         Don’t drink and drive. Do we still have to say this? Just don’t. Add to this one, don't text and drive. Don't get into a car with a driver who is either drinking or texting. 

  • ·         Stay with your group of friends. As tempting as it is, Halloween is not the night to take off with a group of strangers, or worse, that one handsome devil at the party. Stay with people you know and who know you.

  • ·         Here’s a good one: Decorate safely. “Are you the party host? Make sure valuables and breakables are put away safely. Light your jack o’ lanterns with glow sticks instead of real candles, which are a fire hazard.” 

  • Stash some cash. Hopefully you'll end up back at home with your wallet, but just in case - stash some cash somewhere on your body for the night. 

For additional tips, check out these links: 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Meet Our Staff: Alejandra Moncada

Alejandra Moncada
Interlibrary Loan Specialist
Dick Smith Library – Main Floor – 109G

I graduated from Tarleton State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree. While I was in school, I worked at the library's circulation desk until December 2016. I took a little break from working, and on September 5th I became the Interlibrary Loan Specialist.  It is my job to process borrowing and lending through ILLIAD for faculty, staff, and students, as well as other institutions. In other words, I request books, articles, and audiovisual materials from other libraries that have them. We do the same and different libraries borrow our materials. Most of the articles are exchanged electronically. The cool part of my job is that I have to package the books and send them by mail.

I grew up in México in a city named San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. I go back and forth every summer or Christmas break to visit my family.  Other than that, I spent most of my time exercising, watching Netflix, or reading. I began to get a passion for books while I was earning my degree, since most of my classes required me to read from different literature movements from Spain, Latin America, and the Caribbean. I like literature because I can learn about history events, fashion and many things that happened around the time the book was published.  Not only that, I like to analyze the writing style of the authors because they have unique ways of telling stories. Others express their political views by using different personifications to pass the censors.  On the other hand, learning about history is another hobby of mine. My favorite topics included World War I, World War 2, the Holocaust, and anything involving dictators.

I am so happy to be here. I look forward to learning more about the library!

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Italian American Heritage Month

October is Italian American Heritage Month. This is the time to recognize the experiences and contributions of Americans of Italian heritage. Starting in 1980 the United States Congress designated October 12th through 19th as Italian American Heritage week, and it was upgraded to a month in 1989.

2016 US Census Bureau estimate of Americans with Italian ancestry in the lower 48 states.
Created by Joshua Wallace with tools from the American Fact Finder website.
The US Census Bureau estimates that there are 16,896,518 Americans of Italian ancestry as of 2016. That's about 5% of the total population. The high point of Italian immigration to the United States was in the early 20th century. A little over 3 million Italians immigrated to the US from 1900 to 1914 (Iorizzo and Mondello 285).

Timeline of Italian-American History 
Click on the links below to find library resources on each topic. 

1492-1493 - Christopher Columbus, native of Genoa, discovered the New World and began the colonization of Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands on behalf of Spain.
The Log of Christopher Columbus by Christopher Columbus

1499-1503 - Amerigo Vespucci, native of Florence, led multiple expeditions to the Americas on behalf of Spain and Portugal. He is credited with deducing that the lands discovered by Columbus were previously unknown continents and not islands off the coast of Asia. A German mapmaker in 1507 named this new world "America" in his honor.
Amerigo and the New World by Germán Arciniegas

1524 - Giovanni Verrazzano, native of Florence, explored the east coast of North America on behalf of France.
The European Discovery of America by Samuel Eliot Morison

1678 - Henri de Tonti, native of Gaeta, explored the Mississippi River on behalf France under the command of Robert de la Salle. He spent the rest of his life in French Louisiana.
On the Discovery of the Mississippi by Thomas Falconer

1778 - Francis Vigo, native of Mondovi and fur trader living in Spanish Louisiana, supported American independence and provided money, supplies, and information to aid the cause. He became a US citizen in 1783 and spent the rest of his life in America.
The Conquest of the Illinois by George Rogers Clark

The Frieze of American History in the United States Capitol Rotunda.
By Farragutful (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
1860 - Antonio Meucci, Italian immigrant living in New York, developed the first working telephone but he never obtained a patent for it. In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell patented his phone and the rest is history.
"Antonio Meucci: Telephone Pioneer" in Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society by Basilio Catania

1877 - Constantino Brumidi (known as the "Michelangelo of the United States Capitol") began work on the Frieze of American History in the Rotunda of the United States Capitol.
Art in the United States Capitol by Architect of the Capitol

1880 - Il Progresso Italo-Americano became the first Italian language daily newspaper in the United States.

1880-1924 - Escaping extreme poverty, over 4 million Italians immigrated to the US.
The Italian Emigration of our Times by Robert F. Foerster

1887 - Francis B. Spinola, from New York, was the first Italian-American to serve in the US Congress.

1891 - An angry mob attacked a jail in New Orleans and lynched 11 Italian immigrants being held there.
"The Lynching of Sicilian Immigrants in the American South, 1886-1910" in American Nineteenth Century History by Clive Webb.

Italian immigrants faced discrimination in the US. This cartoon was printed in a New Orleans' newspaper in 1888.
By No signature seen on cartoon [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.
1906 - Charles J. Bonaparte was first Italian American to serve on the US Cabinet.

1913 - Rudolph Valentino immigrated to the US. He became a major film star in the silent movie era.
Idols of Modernity: Movie Stars of the 1920s by Patrice Petro

1924 - National Origins Act severely limited Italian immigration to the United States.

1941 - Joe DiMaggio, New York Yankees baseball player, sets 56 game hitting streak record.
Joe DiMaggio: the Hero's Life by Richard Ben Cramer
Beyond DiMaggio: Italian Americans in Baseball by Lawrence Baldassaro

1942 - Charles Poletti, of New York, became the first Italian American governor of a US state.

1943 - Frank Sinatra began his solo singing career.
Sinatra's Century: One Hundred Notes on the Man and his World by David Lehman
The Frank Sinatra Show with Bing Crosby, Dean Martin

1945 - John Basilone became the only enlisted Marine to receive both the Medal of Honor and the Navy Cross in World War II.

1950 - John O. Pastore, of Rhode Island, became the first Italian American to serve in the US Senate.

1956 - Rocky Marciano, heavyweight boxing champion, retired undefeated.

1966 - Jack Valenti, of Texas, began his tenure as the longest serving president of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which ended in 2004.

1986 - Antonin Scalia became the first Italian American to serve on the Supreme Court.
A Matter of Interpretation: Federal Courts and the Law by Antonin Scalia & Amy Gutmann

2007 - Nancy Pelosi, of California, became the first Italian American to serve as Speaker of the House.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the New American Politics by Ronald M. Peters & Cindy Simon Rosenthal

President Reagan and Antonin Scalia meet in Oval Office, 1986.
By Bill Fitz-Patrick, White House Photographer -, Public Domain,

Tarleton State University's Dick Smith Library has a wealth of resources on the Italian American experience. Such as these titles:
Imagining Italians: the Clash of Romance and Race in American Perceptions, 1880-1910 by Joseph P. Cosco
Italian Americans: the History and Culture of a People by Eric Martone
The Italian Texans by University of Texas Institute of Texan Cultures at San Antonio
New Italian Migrations to the United States ed. by Laura E. Ruberto
A New Language, a New World: Italian Immigrants in the United States, 1890-1945 by Nancy C. Carnevale

If you need assistance finding resources on this, or any other topic, then please contact us at 254-968-9249 or

Works Cited 
Iorizzo, Luciano J. and Salvatore Mondello. The Italian Americans. Twayne Publishers, 1980.