Monday, November 28, 2016


Thanksgiving ... Black Friday ... Cyber Monday ... Holiday Season ... we're in what is possibly the busiest time of year for so many of us.  And sometimes it makes us volunteers want to just crawl into a corner of the Bullis Room, take one of the many good books off the shelf, open it, breathe a sigh of relief, and relax as we slowly turn the pages and take in the words and illustrations found there.

We did just that last week and found what we think is the perfect book to read while the rest of the world buzzes around us:

The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow: A Book for an Idle Holiday

This book was written by Jerome Klapk Jerome (1859-1927) and published in 1890 by Henry C. Holt & Company, New York.  The Goodreads website refers to Jerome as; "English author, known for his humorous essays." 

Humor! Isn't that what we need more of? Especially this time of year? So, when holiday hubbub has stressed you to (or near) the max, we're suggesting that you drop by the Bullis Room and take a look at this book. In case we still haven't convinced you this is a "must read," here's an excerpt from the introduction:

"One or two friends I showed these papers in MS. Having observed that they were not half bad, and some of my relations having promised to buy the book, if it ever it came out, I feel I can no longer delay its issue. But for this, as one may say, public demand, I, perhaps, should not have returned to offer these mere 'idle thoughts' of mine as mental food for the English-speaking peoples of the earth.  What readers ask nowadays in a book is that it should improve, instruct, and elevate. This book wouldn't elevate a cow. I cannot conscientiously recommend it for any useful purpose whatever. All I can suggest is, that when you get tired of reading 'the best hundred books,' you may take this up for half an hour. It will be a change."

Chapter headings include: "On Being Idle"; "On Being in Love"; "On Cats and Dogs"; "On the Weather"' "On Being Shy"; "On Babies"; "On Eating and Drinking".

And now it's time to wish you a happy (and idle) Holiday Season, from the Bullis Room staff and volunteers. 

(Oh ... one more thing - if you'd like your own copy of Jerome's book (or want to purchase it as a holiday gift for a friend or relative), you'll find it on your favorite online bookseller site -- both paper and E-reader versions.)

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

November 11 is Veteran's Day

As the early forefathers of our country studied the different ways of governing, they were taken with the Seneca ways.  Their democratic ways served as inspiration for our constitution.  Our constitution is defended by brave men and women who respond to the call of military service.  Our freedom does have a cost.  Since the Revolutionary war, approximately 656,000 military personnel have died in battle.  There have been 1,478,000 non-mortal wounds in that time period.  And this statistic does not include the effects on families, on service members adjusting to domestic life, the lack of medical services sometimes, etc.  Freedom is not free!  And we thank those who have given of their lives to defend the U.S. Constitution.

The Bullis family collected many books on military service.  Charles H. Bullis had fought in the War of 1812 before he emigrated to Macedon in 1839.  His grandson, John Lapham Bullis, fought in the Civil War and the Indian Wars of the West.  And he participated in the Spanish-American War as a Paymaster in Cuba and the Philippines.  Granddaughter, Lydia, married Theodore Wint from Pennsylvania who fought in the Civil War and served in the west.  Granddaughter, Jeanette, married a Lt. who fought in the West and died in the Philippines.  Great-grandson, Charles, served stateside at the end of World War I.   Great-granddaughter, Anita, married into a military family and her son carried on the military tradition.  The family had many links to military service.

So we thank all of you who have served, given your time, your energy, sacrificed for this country, and placed duty to country ahead of personal lives.  Click for thank yous in Wayne County

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

November is National Native American Heritage Month

This month we celebrate National Native American Heritage Month.  It may seem odd that we mention that because John Lapham Bullis was well known as an "Indian fighter" in South Texas. When he led the United State Colored Troops in the Civil War, he took care of his men.  When he led the Seminole Negro Indian Scouts in South Texas, he also battled for them to get their medals of honor and their military pay.   He was not a man who looked at the color one's skin so much as the fruit of one's actions.  We've read that he was a poor Indian agent but we've also seen census rolls where Apaches named their children after him.  We believe he would want a celebration of this month to honor the heritage of those people.  In the Bullis Room we have many books on this heritage.  OWWL search   Some are about the culture, some about the depredations, some about Quaker effort to help the indigenous people.  Please click on the OWWL search link above to view items from the Bullis Room on this topic.
Also in the Bullis Room we have a display of a replica of the Canandaigua Treaty wampum belt.  This belt is the George Washington belt and is composed of thirteen figures holding hands connected to two figures and a house. The 13 figures represent the 13 States of the newly formed United States of America. The two figures and the house symbolize the Haudenosaunee. The two figures next to the longhouse are the Mohawk (Keepers of the Eastern Door) and the Seneca (Keepers of the Western Door). President George Washington had this belt made to ratify the Treaty of 1794.

From A History of Ontario County, New York and Its People by Charles F. Milliken (Vol. 1 - pages 32-33), we have an excerpt of Friend William Savery's journal.  "14th of the Tenth month - - The party of Senecas, headed by the Farmer's Brother, Little Billy, etc., having arrived, last evening, within four miles, were expected this afternoon; but having to paint and ornament themselves before their public entry, they did not arrive till 3 o'clock this afternoon.  The Oneidas, Cayugas, and Onondagas were drawn up, dressed and painted, with their arms prepared for a salute, before General Chapin's door.  The men able to bear arms marched in, assuming a good deal of importance and drew up in a line facing the Oneidas, etc.  Colonel Pickering, General Chapin, and many white people being present.  The Indians fired three rounds which the other Indians answered by a like number, making a long and loud echo through the woods.  Their commanders then ordered them to form a circle around the Commissioner and General Chapin; then, sitting down on the ground, they delivered a speech, through the Farmer's Brother, and returned the strings of wampum which were sent them when they were requested to come to the treaty.  Colonel Pickering answered them in the usual complimentary manner, and ordered several kettles of rum to be brought, after drinking which they dispersed and went to prepare their camp.  Each chief delivered a bundle of sticks, answerable to the number of persons, men, women, and children, under his command, which amounted to 472.  They made a truly terrific and warlike appearance."   On October 14th was the initial arrival of participants of the treaty group and meetings continued until the Treaty was finalized on November 11, 1794.   Some interesting facts reported in the above book: there were at least 1600 Native Americans there, including Red Jacket and Cornplanter; on October 25th seven or eight inches of snow fell; to provide food for everyone in one day, one hundred deer were killed.  
The treaty was written on parchment in duplicate and signed by 50 of the sachems and war chiefs. This treaty is still in effect although it has had some breaches.  This November 11 there will be a commemoration in Canandaigua.  And you are invited.  Click on the link for information.  

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Historic marker at Bullis House

Finally, we have a historic marker at the Bullis House.  A grant from the Wm G. Pomeroy Foundation was used to purchase it. The Pomeroy Foundation supports programs related to blood cancers and helps to preserve history.  The Foundation works closely with the National Marrow Donor Program to conduct bone marrow drives in all communities.  Mr. Pomeroy was
diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia in 2004 and received a stem cell transplant in 2005.  He has since established a foundation that focuses on two of his greatest passions: curing blood cancers and local history.  We are very grateful to the foundation for our historic markers and also that through the blood drives 21 donors have been matched to those in need of treatment for a blood cancer.   A huge thank you to the William G. Pomeroy Foundation!                                                                                
And now for the photo of the historic marker; the dedication will be held in the spring along with an Open House.  Watch for our announcements next spring.

Saturday, October 22, 2016


On Thursday, October 27 through Saturday, October 29, the Friends of Macedon Public Library will launch their Giant Fall Book Sale during regular library hours. This is an opportunity for all of you book lovers to add to your collection without draining your bank accounts. In fact, on Saturday, the Friends will sell a special book sale bag for only $1.00, and you can fill it will as many books of your choice, for just an additional $2. That's a super bargain!

So please plan to stop by the Community Room and look through the books that are organized by genre (and alphabetized( for your convenience. You'll be helping finance library programs while acquiring some really good reading for those long winter nights that are fast approaching us.

And after you've shopped the book sale, we suggest you stop by the Bullis Room and look at the "George Washington Treaty Belt" that is on display there (November, which is Native American month).  It is one of two replicas, the other to be carried on Treaty Commemoration Day on November 11 in Canandaigua.

The current book display outside the Bullis Room is "The Spirits of the Bullis Room." If you haven't seen the various books on religion and spiritualism, you have until the end of October to look at the variety in the Bullis Collection on those subjects.  November's display will feature books on Native Americans.

Monday, October 17, 2016


In this election year, you may be wondering how our country's political system and its parties evolved.  Well, guess what -- there are "scads" of Bullis books on the subject,  but we're going to give you an introduction to only a few.

1)  For a general idea of how our political system evolved (up to the early 1890s):

History of American Politics
Author: Alexander Johnston (1849-1889)
(Rev. & Enl. by William Sloan; continued by Winthrop More Daniels)
Published: New York, Scribner - 1895

2) For an idea of how our  political system may have been affected by religion:

Religion and Politics

Author:  Algernon Sidney Crapsey (1847-1927)
Publisher: New York, T. Whitaker - 1905

3) Or, for those of you who are science-minded:

Physics and Politics;
or, Thoughts on the application of the principles of 
"natural selection" and "inheritance" 
to political society
Author: Walter Bagehot (1826-1877)
Published: New York, D. Appleton and Company, 1875, 1973

4) And, if your interests lie across the ocean:

The Mirrors of Downing Street;
Some political reflections by a gentleman with a duster
Author: Harold Begbie (1871-1929)
Published: New York, G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1921

So ... you are invited to stop by the Bullis Room (during regular library hours) and increase your knowledge on a large variety of subjects, including politics.  The books are patiently waiting for you!

Sunday, October 9, 2016


Yep ... that's what Bullis volunteers (and some visitors) have been doing this week: exploring the Bullis Room shelves for books about explorers and their discoveries.  Being that Columbus Day is tomorrow, it seemed a good and right thing to do.

And what did we find? Here are a few for your reading pleasure and information:

The Discovery of America: 
With Some Account of Ancient America and the Spanish Conquest
Author: John Fisk (1842-1901)
              Published by:  Houghton Mifflin, Boston: 1892

Our Lost Explorers: The Narrative of the Jeannette Arctic Expedition 
As Related by the Survivors, and in the Records and Last Journals of Lieutenant De Long
Author:  Richard W. Bliss; Compiled by: Raymond Lee Newcomb
Published by:  American Publishing Co., Hartford, Connecticut, 1882

Columbus and Columbia;  A Pictorial History of the Man and the Nation,
Embracing a Review of  Our Country's Progress ...
Authors:  James W. Buel  (1849-1920);   John Clark Ridpath (1840-1900);
Benjamin Butterworth (1837-1998);    James Gillespie Blaine (1830-1893)
Published by: Caie,  Cincinnati, 1892

Missionary Explorers Among the American Indians
Edited by: Mary Gay Humphreys
Published by:  C. Scribner's Sons, New York, 1913

We actually found a total of 35 Bullis  books telling of discoveries in the Amazon, Jerusalem,  Argentina, Paraguay, China, Nippur, the Nile,  Equatorial Africa, Siberia, and Scandinavia (to name a few),  

So ... tomorrow is a holiday and many of us have the day off work -- but Macedon Public Library will be  open.  Please consider stopping by and spending part of your day exploring the Bullis Room for yourself.