Profile: Ellen Terrell

Library of Congress

Ellen Terrell has been a Business Reference Specialist in the Library of Congress Science, Technology and Business Division since September of 2002. Prior to that, she was a business librarian at Arthur Andersen's Washington, D.C. office where she worked for 5 years. She holds a Master's in Library of Science from The Catholic University in Washington, D.C. and a Bachelors of Arts from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

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NoteStreams By Ellen Terrell

A Brief History of Pumpkin Pie in America

Today’s post is written by science librarian and culinary specialist Alison Kelly. She has provided her expertise in a number of Inside Adams blog posts related to food history and cooking such as Early American Beer, and Early Mixology Books.
Library of Congress Blogs

Category: History

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Susan Fenimore Cooper: The First American Woman to Publish Nature Writing

If her name sounds familiar, it is because her father was James Fenimore Cooper, author of The Last of the Mohicans. Susan Cooper’s book sprang from journals of her observations on weather, fauna and flora, and the general rural life around her hometown of Cooperstown, New York, founded by her grandfather William Cooper in 1786. She sought to educate her readers about the natural world and hoped this would encourage them to value and protect it.
This post was authored by Stephanie Marcus, Science Reference & Research Specialist, in the Science, Technology, and Business Division of the Library of Congress. She is also author of the blog posts “Kebabs, Kabobs, Shish Kebabs, Shashlyk, and: Chislic” and “The Potato Transformed.”
Library of Congress Blogs: Inside Adams

Category: History

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“My Name is Alexander Hamilton. And There’s a Million Things I Haven’t Done”

The musical Hamilton is based on Ron Chernow's book Alexander Hamilton. While the why behind it may go unanswered, it remains true that Alexander himself was a most compelling character.
Library of Congress Blogs

Category: History

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Harriet Tubman, the “Grand Watermelon” Debate, & Redemption

Since the Treasury’s announcement in April that Harriet Tubman would be featured on the front of the new $20 bill, the design change has become a popular topic of conversation. So what's this about a "Grand Watermelon"? You'll be surprised!
Library of Congress

Category: History

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About the Firm of Scrooge & Marley

In 1843 Charles Dickens published his classic A Christmas Carol about the transformation of Ebenezer Scrooge. Like many who have read the book, I have also seen various stage and television productions over the years and most of the attention was on the overall theme. When one of the details – the name of Scrooge’s firm – caught my attention, I decided to apply some business research skills in order to “learn” more about the fictional firm.
Library Of Congress

Category: History

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A History of Self-Help, Motivation & Success

You may think that motivational speakers, self-help guides, and career counseling are products of the late 20th century, but their history actually goes back further.

Category: History

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Victor Gruen’s Shopping Towns U.S.A.

Victor Gruen was a designer, architect, and urban planner. But for many, he is best known for creating the modern mall.

Category: History

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American Enterprise at the Smithsonian

A new exhibit at the Smithsonian – American Enterprise located in the Innovation wing of the National Museum of American History – is telling the history of American business and innovation. According to the Smithsonian, this exhibit “chronicles the tumultuous interaction of capitalism and democracy that resulted in the continual remaking of American business—and American life.” It is organized into four chronological eras: the Merchant Era (1770s -1850s), the Corporate Era (1860s -1930s), the Consumer Era (1940s – 1970s) and the Global Era (1980s – 2010s) and will, according to the press release, “convey the drama, breadth and diversity of America’s business heritage along with its benefits, failures and unanticipated consequences…”

Category: History

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Du Bois in Paris – Exposition Universelle, 1900

The Paris Exposition held in 1900 was a lavish affair featuring contributions from all over the world showcased in one of the most beautiful cities in the world. I was really inspired when I saw an image titled “Negro business men in the United States” and was intrigued by information in the note indicating that it had been created by Atlanta University students for the “Negro Exhibit” at the Paris Exposition Universelle. I did some reading and I was even more excited when I saw that Daniel A.P. Murray, an African American researcher and historian at the Library of Congress was involved. He worked with W. E. B. Du Bois, Booker T. Washington, Thomas J. Calloway, and others to create the exhibit.

Category: History

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Before Computers, There Was the Typewriter

Modern computers allow a single individual to do amazing things. But before the computer, there was the typewriter. There are a lot of people around now who may have never seen or used a typewriter. They don’t know what it was like to fix typographical errors or remember to leave space for footnotes and page numbers. They haven’t experienced the agony of having to retype an entire document or page just to insert a single word, sentence, or paragraph. They may not understand that designing, much less creating booklets and brochures, meant time spent with a printer – the business, not the machine! There were no fancy spreadsheet functions that tallied up numbers, much less turning those numbers into pie charts or graphs with a few clicks – there was just the tab key to keep the numbers in line and a calculator to add them all up.

Category: History

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15 Years on the Erie Canal

The Erie Canal played a major part in commerce in the history of the United States. Its creation helped to make New York City the chief port in the United States and opened the western part of the state and other western territories to increased settlement and trade. It connected the Hudson River to Lake Erie and many of New York state’s biggest cities – Albany, Utica, Syracuse, Buffalo – lie along its banks.

Category: History

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A Factory, a Fire, and Worker Safety

The Triangle Waist Company was owned by Max Blanck and Isaac Harris and manufactured shirtwaists. Most of the company’s employees were young, immigrant women; and like many manufacturing concerns of the day, working conditions were not ideal and the space was cramped.
When the Shirtwaist fire broke out on the 8th floor, many workers found exiting their floor, as well as the building itself, almost impossible.

Category: History

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A Brief History of Amendments 18 and 21

A reoccurring theme working as a Business reference librarian at the Library is helping researchers who are doing historical research on various industries. One that comes up every once in a while is the alcoholic beverage industry. Every time I do research in this area, I am reminded that Prohibition profoundly divided this industry into a “before” and “after.” There were several anniversaries earlier this year–Prohibition began in a January and ended in a December, so I felt this was an appropriate time to write a post that has long been in the back of my mind.

Category: History

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