Lucy Stone quote: “Half a century ago…

Lucy Stone quote:

“Half a century ago women were at an infinite disadvantage in regard to their occupations. The idea that their sphere was at home, and only at home, was like a band of steel on society. But the spinning-wheel and the loom, which had given employment to women, had been superseded by machinery, and something else had to take their places. The taking care of the house and children, and the family sewing, and teaching the little summer school at a dollar per week, could not supply the needs nor fill the aspirations of women. But every departure from these conceded things was met with the cry, ‘You want to get out of your sphere,’ or, ‘To take women out of their sphere;’ and that was to fly in the face of Providence, to unsex yourself in short, to be monstrous women, women who, while they orated in public, wanted men to rock the cradle and wash the dishes. We pleaded that whatever was fit to be done at all might with propriety be done by anybody who did it well; that the tools belonged to those who could use them; that the possession of a power presupposed a right to its use. This was urged from city to city, from state to state. Women were encouraged to try new occupations. We endeavored to create that wholesome discontent in women that would compel them to reach out after far better things. But every new step was a trial and a conflict. Men printers left when women took the type. They formed unions and pledged themselves not to work for men who employed women. But these tools belonged to women, and today a great army of women are printers unquestioned.”

Lucy Stone portrait, taken circa 1850
Lucy Stone, circa 1850

“Lucy Stone quote: ‘Half a century ago…” sources: 

Portrait – Lucy Stone, half-length portrait of a woman, seated, facing front. [Between 1840 and 1860] Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <> & Wikimedia Commons

Quote – Lucy Stone speech “The Progress of Fifty Years” – May 01, 1893 in Chicago, Illinois at the Congress of Women at World’s Fair – Iowa State University Archive of Women’s Political Communication


Please click here to read another quote about equality for women.


“Every man I meet is in some way my superior…

Ralph Waldo Emerson, circa 1857
Ralph Waldo Emerson, circa 1857


“Every man I meet is in some way my superior, and in that, I can learn of him.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“‘Every man I meet is in some way my superior…” sources: 

As quoted in Think, Vol. 4-5 (1938), p. 32 – Wikiquote / Portrait taken circa 1857 – Southworth and Hawes, George Eastman House Collection – Wikimedia Commons


Please click here to read another Ralph Waldo Emerson quote.

Henry David Thoreau quote: “Most of the luxuries…

Henry David Thoreau quote:

“Most of the luxuries, and many of the so called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind. With respect to luxuries and comforts, the wisest have ever lived a more simple and meagre life than the poor. The ancient philosophers, Chinese, Hindoo, Persian, and Greek, were a class than which none has been poorer in outward riches, none so rich in inward. We know not much about them. It is remarkable that we know so much of them as we do. The same is true of the more modern reformers and benefactors of their race. None can be an impartial or wise observer of human life but from the vantage ground of what we should call voluntary poverty. Of a life of luxury the fruit is luxury, whether in agriculture, or commerce, or literature, or art. There are nowadays professors of philosophy, but not philosophers. Yet it is admirable to profess because it was once admirable to live. To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom as to live according to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity, and trust. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically. The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly. They make shift to live merely by conformity, practically as their fathers did, and are in no sense the progenitors of a nobler race of men.”

Henry David Thoreau, 1856
Henry David Thoreau, 1856

“Henry David Thoreau quote: ‘Most of the luxuries…” sources:

Quote – Thoreau, Henry David. Walden.Project Gutenberg /

Portrait – Henry David Thoreau portrait taken in 1856 by Benjamin Dexter Maxham – National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of anonymous donor / Wikimeda Commons

Ernest Everett Just: a snapshot biography.

“The brotherhood of man is not so much a Christian doctrine as a fundamental biological law. For biology does not and cannot recognize any specific differences among humans. This is a fact of tremendous significance for the human family. The peace of the world lives here. And the transcendent value of science to man will be measured in just proportion to which we can realize this truth.” – Ernest Everett Just

Ernest Everett Just working using a microscope at the lab in 1925
Ernest Everett Just, 1925

Ernest Everett Just Biography

The years of his life were often experienced with unkind treatment, as he faced much discrimination for being black. But through the challenges, Ernest Everett Just kept finding opportunities, and in doing so, became an instrumental part of scientific research. 

Born in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1883, Ernest was only four years old when his father and grandfather passed away, making his mother financially responsible for Ernest and two younger siblings. His mother, who also experienced the loss of her two eldest children from disease only a couple of years prior to losing her husband, supported the family by teaching during the school year and working in phosphate mines during summertime. And it was also during these years that she dedicated much time to teaching Ernest, as an illness left him needing to relearn reading and writing. 

At the start of his teens, his mother enrolled him in school in hopes he would become a teacher. Starting first at a school in South Carolina, his mother then sent him to Kimball Union Academy college prep school in New Hampshire, believing schools in the North could provide her son with a better education. Soon after, on a trip home, Ernest learned his mother had passed away just an hour before his arrival. He returned to school and, through his sorrow, earned top grades in his class while graduating in only three years instead of the typical four. 

In 1903, Ernest began the undergraduate program at Dartmouth. He struggled in his coursework at first. But with time, his grades improved, and he discovered a passion for biology. Ernest graduated from Dartmouth as the only Magna Cum Laude recipient of his class and the Valedictorian. However, the tradition of a Valedictorian speech was not honored because of his race.

After Dartmouth, Ernest took a teaching position at Howard University. He then earned a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. But unable to secure a teaching position from a major university in the U.S., Ernest moved to Europe. Taking a role at a lab in Naples, Italy, Ernest thrived. He appreciated the way research was being conducted, how researchers treated one another, the time they spent together. 

Ernest Everett Just, circa 1920
Ernest Everett Just, circa 1920

Throughout his career, Earnest would make significant contributions to biological research. He was respected worldwide, known for his brilliance in designing experiments, authoring zoology books, and publishing numerous papers. 

He passed away from pancreatic cancer at 58 in 1941. 


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Click here to read a snapshot of another scientist, George Washington Carver.

“Ernest Everett Just: a snapshot biography.” sources & notes: 

“E.E. Just: Scientific Pioneer, Member of the Class of 1907”, published February 12th, 2021 – The Call to Lead, A campaign for Dartmouth / “The Greatest Problem in American Biology” by Shelby Grantham – Dartmouth Alumni Magazine Profile, 1983 / Ernest Everett Just – The University of Chicago Library / National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, NPG.96.89

To cite:

“Ernest Everett Just: a snapshot biography.” Historical Snapshots.

Ida Tarbell: Standard Oil Company book origin

Ida Tarbell, 1905
Ida Tarbell, 1905


Ida Tarbell wrote “The History of the Standard Oil Company,” to show the corruption and other nefarious activities of the Standard Oil Company. This work, which was first published as a serial in McClure’s Magazine and later as a book, helped lead the breakup of the company into smaller organizations.

The following quote is a reflection from Ida on the book’s origin. 


“As Steffens’ case shows there was always much fingering of a subject at McClure’s before one of the staff was told to go ahead. The original hint might come from Mr. McClure’s overflowing head and pocket, Mr. Phillips’ notebooks, as much a part of him as his glasses, the daily mail, the chance word of a caller. We all turned in our pickings. They must concern the life of the day, that which was interesting people. An idea, once launched, grew until fixed on somebody; and, once started, it continued to grow according to the response of readers. No response—no more chapters. A healthy response—as many chapters as the material justified.

It was by this process that my next long piece of work came into being: ‘The History of the Standard Oil Company.’

The deluge of monopolistic trusts which had followed the close of the Spanish-American War and the ‘return of prosperity’ was disturbing and confusing people. It was contrary to their philosophy, their belief that, given free opportunity, free competition, there would always be brains and energy enough to prevent even the ablest leader monopolizing an industry. What was interfering with the free play of the forces in which they trusted? They had been depending on the Federal Antitrust Law passed ten years before. Was it quite useless? It looked that way.

There was much talk in the office about it, and there came to the top finally the idea of using the story of a typical trust to illustrate how and why the clan grew. How about the greatest of them all—the Standard Oil Company?

I suppose I must have talked rather freely about my own recollections and impressions of its development. It had been a strong thread weaving itself into the pattern of my life from childhood on.

I had come into the world just before the discovery of oil, the land on which I was born not being over thirty miles away from that first well. The discovery had shaped my father’s life, rescuing him as it did thousands of others from the long depression which had devastated the eighteen-fifties. I had grown up with oil derricks, oil tanks, pipe lines, refineries, oil exchanges. I remembered what had happened in the Oil Region in 1872 when the railroads and an outside group of refiners attempted to seize what many men had created. It was my first experience in revolution. On the instant the word became holy to me. It was your privilege and duty to fight injustice. I was much elated when, not so long afterwards, I fell on Rousseau’s ‘Social Contract’ and read his defense of the right to revolt.

I had been only dimly conscious of what had happened in the decade following—the decade in which the Standard Oil Company had completed its monopoly. It was the effect on the people about me that stirred me, the hate and suspicion and fear that engulfed the community. I had been so deeply stirred by this human tragedy, as I have told, that I had made a feeble and ineffectual attempt to catch it, fix it in a novel.”

“Ida Tarbell: Standard Oil Company book origin” sources: – Tarbell, Ida M. (Ida Minerva), 1857-1944. All in the day’s work; an autobiography New York, The Macmillan company, 1939. p. cm. PS3539.A58 Z5 1939 / Project Gutenberg / Portrait of Ida Tarbell taken circa 1905 / Ida M. Tarbell. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>


Please click here to read our Snapshot Biography of Ida Tarbell.

Portrait of two Samoan women, 1905

Portrait of two Samoan women, 1905
Portrait of two Samoan women, 1905

Portrait of two Samoan women – Tualele, on the left, and Selesa, on the right – taken in 1905.

In the photograph, they’re both wearing lei (necklaces) and ‘ula lei (whaletooth necklaces). 

“Portrait of two Samoan women, 1905” sources: Two leaf-clad women (, 1905, Sāmoa, by Thomas Andrew. Acquisition history unknown. Te Papa (O.001140/1)

Viktor Frankl: “Love is the ultimate and the highest goal.”

Viktor Frankl, 1965
Viktor Frankl, 1965


“A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth — that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love.”

– Viktor Frankl

“Viktor Frankl: ‘Love is the ultimate and the highest goal.'” sources:

Portrait of Viktor from Prof. Dr. Franz Vesely was taken in 1965 (no changes made) / Wikimedia Commons / Frankl, V. E. 1., Lasch, I., Kushner, H. S., & Winslade, W. J. (2006). Man’s search for meaning. Boston, Beacon Press. p. 37 / Man’s Search for Meaning – Wikiquote

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Thomas Jefferson quote: “The tumults in America…

Thomas Jefferson, 1801
Thomas Jefferson, 1801

Thomas Jefferson quote:

“The tumults in America, I expected would have produced in Europe an unfavorable opinion of our political state. But it has not. On the contrary, the small effect of these tumults seems to have given more confidence in the firmness of our governments. The interposition of the people themselves on the side of government has had a great effect on the opinion here. I am persuaded myself that the good sense of the people will always be found to be the best army. They may be led astray for a moment, but will soon correct themselves. The people are the only censors of their governors: and even their errors will tend to keep these to the true principles of their institution. To punish these errors too severely would be to suppress the only safeguard of the public liberty. The way to prevent these irregular interpositions of the people is to give them full information of their affairs thro’ the channel of the public papers, & to contrive that those papers should penetrate the whole mass of the people. The basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. But I should mean that every man should receive those papers & be capable of reading them. I am convinced that those societies (as the Indians) which live without government enjoy in their general mass an infinitely greater degree of happiness than those who live under the European governments. Among the former, public opinion is in the place of law, & restrains morals as powerfully as laws ever did anywhere. Among the latter, under pretence of governing they have divided their nations into two classes, wolves & sheep. I do not exaggerate. This is a true picture of Europe. Cherish therefore the spirit of our people, and keep alive their attention. Do not be too severe upon their errors, but reclaim them by enlightening them. If once they become inattentive to the public affairs, you & I, & Congress & Assemblies, judges & governors shall all become wolves. It seems to be the law of our general nature, in spite of individual exceptions; and experience declares that man is the only animal which devours his own kind, for I can apply no milder term to the governments of Europe, and to the general prey of the rich on the poor. The want of news has led me into disquisition instead of narration, forgetting you have every day enough of that. I shall be happy to hear from you sometimes, only observing that whatever passes thro’ the post is read, & that when you write what should be read by myself only, you must be so good as to confide your letter to some passenger or officer of the packet. I will ask your permission to write to you sometimes, and to assure you of the esteem & respect with which I have honour to be.”

“Thomas Jefferson quote: ‘The tumults in America…” sources:

Portrait painted in 1800 – The Whitehouse Historical Society & Wikimedia Commons

Thomas Jefferson quote taken from his letter to Edward Carrington on Jan 16th, 1787 – Wikisource

President Calvin Coolidge Quotes

Calvin Coolidge, circa 1919
Calvin Coolidge, circa 1919


President Calvin Coolidge quotes on race in the U.S.

“During the war 500,000 colored men and boys were called up under the draft, not one of whom sought to evade it. They took their places wherever assigned in defense of the nation of which they are just as truly citizens as are any others. The suggestion of denying any measure of their full political rights to such a great group of our population as the colored people is one which, however it might be received in some other quarters, could not possibly be permitted by one who feels a responsibility for living up to the traditions and maintaining the principles of the Republican Party. Our Constitution guarantees equal rights to all our citizens, without discrimination on account of race or color. I have taken my oath to support that Constitution. It is the source of your rights and my rights. I propose to regard it, and administer it, as the source of the rights of all the people, whatever their belief or race.”

“Numbered among our population are some 12,000,000 colored people. Under our Constitution their rights are just as sacred as those of any other citizen. It is both a public and a private duty to protect those rights. The Congress ought to exercise all its powers of prevention and punishment against the hideous crime of lynching, of which the negroes are by no means the sole sufferers, but for which they furnish a majority of the victims.”

President Calvin Coolidge quotes on duty

“Duty is collective as well as personal. Law must rest on the eternal foundations of righteousness. Industry, thrift, character, cannot be conferred by act or resolve. Government cannot relieve from toil. Do the day’s work. If it be to protect the rights of the weak, whoever objects, do it. If it be to help a powerful corporation better to serve the people, whatever the opposition, do that. Expect to be called a stand patter, but don’t be a stand patter. Expect to be called a demagogue, but don’t be a demagogue. We need a broader, firmer, deeper faith in the people, a faith that men desire to do right, that the government is founded upon a righteousness which will endure.”

President Calvin Coolidge quotes on governance

“We must have no carelessness in our dealings with public property or the expenditure of public money. Such a condition is characteristic either of an undeveloped people, or of a decadent civilization. America is neither. It stands out strong and vigorous and mature. We must have an administration which is marked, not by the inexperience of youth, or the futility of age, but by the character and ability of maturity. We have had the self-control to put into effect the Budget system, to live under it and in accordance with it. It is an accomplishment in the art of self-government of the very highest importance. It means that the American Government is not a spendthrift, and that it is not lacking in the force or disposition to organize and administer its finances in a scientific way. To maintain this condition puts us constantly on trial. It requires us to demonstrate whether we are weaklings, or whether we have strength of character. It is not too much to say that it is a measure of the power and integrity of the civilization which we represent. I have a firm faith in your ability to maintain this position, and in the will of the American people to support you in that determination. In that faith in you and them, I propose to persevere. I am for economy. After that I am for more economy. At this time and under present conditions that is my conception of serving all the people.”

“President Calvin Coolidge Quotes” sources:

State of the Union Address on December 6th, 1923 – Wikisource / Foundations of the Republic by Calvin Coolidge, published in 1926 – Internet Archive / “Duty of Government” by Calvin Coolidge – Wikisource / Portrait – Gov’r. Calvin Coolidge. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <> / Wikiquote