Magazines (periodicals in library language) have always been an immediate reflection of the culture in which they are written and produced - cultural barometers of what is "new and current" at a particular moment in history. Today, the printed word is struggling, but many publications have migrated to online versions.
Cleveland Public Library has a vast collection of periodicals dating back one hundred years or more. You can read the serialized stories of Sherlock Holmes, which first appeared a chapter at a time, in the monthly publication The Strand, or enjoy the ads of old cars and women's fashions in Life.
The Special Collections Department houses some of the rarer and more valuable periodicals. The Owl, published in London from 1919-1923, was a literary magazine which also included work from some of the leading artists of the time. (Image at left is by Rockwell Kent.)
Broom, an international magazine of the arts, published in Rome from 1921-1924, was intended to be an outlet for members of the "lost generation," some American writers and other artists disillusioned with the United States following World War I who moved to Europe (including most famously F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, and Cole Porter).
Dyn, published in Mexico City between 1942 and 1944, provided an outlet for the Surrealists and other avant-gardes from many countries. The title is derived from the Greek word "dynaton" - "the possible." It was lavishly illustrated and covered a variety of topics including philosophy, anthropology, and science, as well as poetry and the graphic arts.
Stop by the John G. White reading room on the 3rd floor of the Main Library at Cleveland Public Library to enjoy these magazines, and others from our collection.