We thought this 1892 sheet music from our Library for the Performing Arts would make a nice Father’s Day Caturday installment. It would seem, based on the illustrations, that the composer’s daddy wouldn’t buy him a dog, or a “bow-wow.” Perhaps he brought home a kitty instead, as there are multiple cats on the cover. Oddly, though, the actual lyrics seem to indicate that this is somehow a fairly serious English political song. Well … whatever. Happy Father’s Day! And Happy Caturday!
We’re all mad here … about cats. Which is why we’re celebrating Caturday by sharing this rare (and somewhat strange) 1982 Martha Swope photo of actress Kate Burton holding an adorable little cat while promoting the Broadway revival of “Alice in Wonderland”! The image is held at our Library for the Performing Arts, and is part of an interesting series of promotional photos for the play (a series that includes more of Alice with the cat, Alice by herself, Alice with a pig, etc). So check them out! And while you’re at it, check out Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland and get reading! PS - we’re closed this weekend for the holiday, so if you can’t wait until Tuesday, check out an eBook version right now!
Happy Caturday from The New York Public Library’s Library for the Performing Arts! In this rare 1964 Martha Swope photo from the Jerome Robbins Dance Division (unearthed by our own Jeremy Megraw), internationally-renowned choreographer George Balanchine (known by many as the father of modern American ballet) watches in flip flops as his cat Mourka flies through the air with the greatest of ease (the cat became famous - this photo was once in Life magazine, and a book was written about him and his ability to do acrobatic dance moves). It’s good to know that even a legend like Balanchine gave his cat that familiar, bewildered “What in the name of all that is good are you doing” look. Happy Caturday! And, while you’re thinking of it, flip through more amazing, rare photos from our collections here - there are plenty of other cat images.
From the collection of Major-General Hardwicke’s illustrations of Indian Zoology, today’s Caturday cat is the Beautiful Cat. (Yes you heard that right, THE BEAUTIFUL CAT) In addition to this regal feline, the Major-General shared his illustrations of many animals including the Allied Cat, the Bengal Civet and many others!
Saturdays are rife with cats and rightfully so, we say.
Because nothing is quite so grand as NYPL’s Caturday.
For today’s installment, we thought we’d share
An ode to cats, both bold and fair.
For some, black cats are luck gone bad.
And the long-haired white too pretty.
There are those who think the Tabby plain
And the tail-less Manx too gritty.
The Siamese that is much too chatty,
The Tortoiseshell, a little batty.
The solitude of the Russian Blue
And the Abyssinian… who?
But, we disagree with all of that, we love cats great and small.
The black cat or the siamese are both a living doll.
We like the short-haired house cat and the Maine Coon mane.
There’s no cat we do not like and so we shall refrain…
We love all cats great and small, of that you can be sure.
But now we ask of you, which cat do YOU adore?
In honor of all the folks holiday shopping this weekend, we present the Caturday favorite “A Xmas Shopper,” a 1914 photo print from our Mid-Manhattan Picture Collection. We’ve posted this photo several times, but come on - it never gets old. Happy Caturday and happy shopping (PS - don’t forget to check our online Library Shop for amazing gift ideas that also support NYPL. For example, need a nice Hanukkah gift? How about the NYPL publication Jews in America: From New Amsterdam to the Yiddish Stage?)!
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, so for this week’s Caturday, we’re sharing some photos of cat balloons from the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade! The photos are from the 1931 and 1932 parades, and are currently in our Irma and Paul Milstein Division of United States History, Local History and Genealogy. Yes, they’re a little small (and affixed to paper along with photos of other balloons) but you can still see them! If you want to see other old school photos of the parade, we have plenty here. Happy Caturday!
Check out the first page of the oldest surviving poem by iconic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley - “Cat In Distress” (transcript of the full poem here). He apparently wrote this when he was about 10. Sometime between 1809 and 1811, his sister Elizabeth transcribed it onto this piece of paper and created the little watercolor cat image. When Elizabeth died, the poem was passed to her sister Hellen. It is now in our Carl H. Pforzheimer Collection of Shelley and His Circle, one of the world’s leading repositories for the study of English Romanticism. Its holdings consist of some 25,000 books, manuscripts, letters, and other objects, chiefly from the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. And today, it takes center stage for Caturday. Happy Caturday!
Iz you joking?
This magazine poster - printed 118 years ago this month in November 1895 and now in our Art and Architecture Division, depicts a very overdressed woman carrying her precious little black cat through the snow. The cat is dressed, it seems, as a jester - and his expression, we think, shows just how much he is not enjoying it. Cats - they never change. Happy Caturday!
PS - Did you know our Art, Prints and Photographs Division has its own Tumblr? If you follow the Library, you should follow them, too - check it out!
I iz confuzzled.
This cute kitty got a surprise when housemate Andrei (who is four and a half months old) dressed as one of the Three Little Bears this Halloween. You can almost read the cat’s mind: “Ummmm, what is this supposed to be?” Andrei is just one of many costumed cuties whose parents responded to our request for people dressed as storybook characters this Halloween (go back through our Tumblr and check out some of the others! They’re adorable!). So happy Caturday, and happy belated Halloween! Hope everyone is still on a sugar high!