Friday, September 25, 2015


There is so much interest in Pope Francis's visit that we looked through the Bullis stacks for books about previous popes. And we found these two:

The History of the Popes During the Last Four Centuries
by Leopold von Ranke (1795-1886)
Published by G.Bell & Sons Ltd., London, 1906


The Pope and the Council
by Johann Joseph Ignaz von Dollinger (1799-1890)
Published by Roberts Brothers, Boston, 1870

These books cover a variety of topics such as:
Theory of Ecclesiastical Policy
Conflicts of Opinions
Latter Times of Sixtus V
Election and Character of Clement VIII
Jesuit Programme for the Council
Modern Civilisation and Constitutionalism Condemned 
Personal Attitude of the Popes
The "Curia"
Trials for Witchcraft

... and lots more!

Stop by and spend some time with these more-than-a-century old books. It'll be worth your while.

Monday, September 14, 2015


Subtitle: Some answers to the posts "LOOK WHAT WE FOUND!" and "WHAT'S IN A NAME?"

A member of the Bullis Committee did some more "digging" and found information that points to the identity of the baby girl whose birth announcement is shown in our August 26 post.

From the information we now have, it seems that Dorothy Josephine Knapp's family was living on Main Street in Macedon at the time of her birth, and her Grandmother Knapp lived close by on Bickford Street.

And ... here's the really big scoop: There is a family connection with the Nettie and Charlie Bullis.

That's all for now. We'll let you know more later ... honestly, we will!

Sunday, September 6, 2015


The birth announcement shown in our last post has generated several questions. Among them is the significance of the baby's given names--Dorothy and Josephine--and the year of birth.

Nettie and Charlie's mother was named Josephine, so it's possible that is the source of the baby girl's middle name. But what about that first name?  We have not found any Dorothy's in the immediate Bullis family tree.

Could the Knapps have been influenced by L. Frank Baum's book, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz?  It was published in 1900, and the movie version premiered in 1939. According to the official website of the Social Security Administration, Dorothy was the second most popular baby girl's name in 1920 and the third most popular in 1930.

So, if the Knapps followed the "naming trend" of their time, was Dorothy Josephine born between 1900 and 1930? Perhaps ... but honestly, we can't say for sure.

And then there's that movie star, Dorothy Lamour, who was popular in the late 1930s through the 1950s. Hmmm - oh well.

It's fun to think about and to do some "what ifs,"  but when all's said and done, we have to return to our original premise: we do not know. However, this is the kind of thing that keeps us volunteers fascinated with the history of the Bullis family. So we'll keep on with our speculating and let you know when we come up with some answers.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


Volunteers continue to sort through a group of documents, letters, and cards that found their way to the Bullis Room recently. And this week they found a birth announcement.  There is no year indicated, so we can't determine when this blessed event occurred. However, the parents were obviously very proud of the new addition to their family.

Inside, the card reads:
"My name is Dorothy Josephine
I'm the new Boss at
The Knapps
Mr. and Mrs. T. H. Knapp
are my new parents
I arrived on July 16th
My weight is 9 pounds
Come and See Me!"

(And you can "Come and See" the original card in the Bullis Room. Please stop by sometime.)

Monday, August 17, 2015


If you're  one of those people who remember when you could mail a postcard for one penny, then you'll need to take a look at the display case outside the Bullis Room.

(And even if you can't remember back that far, we think you'll enjoy spending a few minutes at the same place.)

The postcards displayed there were ones sent to Nettie Bullis from friends who were vacationing in: New York state; New York City; Boston, Massachusetts; and Canada. Most of them have very short messages, the "wish you were here" kind. All of them have beautiful photography on sturdy matte paper that seems to be just a cut above most contemporary postcards.

So please add "stop by MPL and look at Bullis postcard display" on your to-do list.  They are a reminder of what we miss out on today, with text messages and selfies.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015


If you've been reading the almost-daily news headlines reminding us of the melting glaciers on our planet, you'll be interested in these two Bullis books by John Tyndall:

Forms of Water in Clouds and Rivers, Ice and Glaciers
by John Tyndall  (1820-1893)
Published in New York, D. Appleton, 1874, c 1872


Hours of Exercise in the Alps
by John Tyndall (1820-1893)
Published in New York, D. Appleton, 1875

Tyndall was a 19th century physicist and professor of physics at the distinguished Royal Institute of Great Britain.  In addition to teaching, he did research and authored 18 books, 10 of which are in the Bullis Collection.

We urge you to stop by the Bullis Room and spend some time with these books. Both of them have numerous illustrations, and Hours of Exercise in the Alps has some very informative information on:

"Structure and Properties of Ice"
"Structure of Glaciers"
"Helmholtz on Ice and Glaciers"
"Observations of the Mer de Glace"

We'll have more on John Tyndall's books in our post next week.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015


At our Bullis Room Committee meeting last week, we again talked about how to reach out to more members of the Bullis family. One suggestion was a Facebook page in honor and memory of John Lapham Bullis.  The group liked the idea - and we are currently working on it. (More details will be coming in the next few weeks.)

Our first step toward establishing a Facebook page was to search for current Facebook accounts with the Bullis name.  The results was an impressive list that included "Bullis School."  In reading the history of that educational institution located in Potomac, Maryland, we zoomed in on the name "Captain William F. Bullis." Captain Bullis and his wife founded this school in 1930 to "prepare young men for service academy entrance exams." (
The school continues to thrive today.

However, this new knowledge produced several questions that are now swirling through our heads, two of which are:
1. Is Captain William F. Bullis in any way related to the Macedon Bullises?
2. If so, does Captain Bullis have living descendants?

And a third question we're asking:
3. If you are a descendant of Captain William F. Bullis (or have knowledge of any of his descendants). would you please contact us?

We will greatly appreciate any information about the Bullis family that you can share with us.