American artists and illustrators have documented events through the nation’s history, producing a vital visual record of collective experiences. One illustrator, who can still be called upon to look back through time, is Edwin Forbes, who lived in the Long Island village of Flatbush, before it was annexed into Brooklyn, and eventually New York City. He was a noted illustrator of the Civil War and also an inventor of the horse racing starting gate. [Read more…] about Edwin Forbes: Civil War Artist & Starting Gate Inventor
Spirit of the Times
In the early 1800s it was unusual for Americans to be interested in sporting matters on their own shores. News from Europe was the only sporting news of merit, and publishing an American sporting journal was considered a risky use of capital.
The first attempt along these lines may have been in 1829 Baltimore, where John S. Skinner published a monthly magazine which focused on race horse pedigrees called The American Turf Register and Sporting Magazine. Another early attempt was published in New York by the recognized writer and horseman Cadwallader R. Colden, whose organ was called The New-York Sporting Magazine and Annals of the American and English Turf, first published in 1833.
Among the most notable of the sporting press arrived in 1831, when William T. Porter and James Haw published the first issue of The Spirit of the Times, focusing on horse literature and sporting subjects. They had chosen the name for their broadsheet from a quotation in Shakespeare’s King John, “The spirit of the times shall teach me speed.” [Read more…] about The Spirit of the Times: A 19th Century Chronicle of American Sports