According to a press release from the Carnegie-Stout Public Library, they will be welcoming local researcher and historian John T. Pregler on Sunday, February 5th, at 1pm. Pregler will be giving a presentation about his latest book, “Historic Tales of Old Dubuque,” in the third-floor auditorium.

Credit: John T Pregler / Carnegie-Stout Public Library
Credit: John T Pregler / Carnegie-Stout Public Library
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This presentation will be followed by a book signing. The event is free and open to the public and copies of the book will be available for purchase through River Lights Bookstore.

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Comprised of six vignettes, “Historic Tales of Old Dubuque” covers forgotten Dubuque history of national importance. Pregler will focus his presentation on the vignette about American abolitionist Frederick Douglass visiting Dubuque on three separate occasions and a photograph of Douglass taken by famed Dubuque photographer Samuel Root in his studio at 8th & Main Street.

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I was intrigued and so I did a little digging down this Historical Dubuque “rabbit-hole.” I found some interesting historical facts; Samuel Root first appeared as a Daguerreian, a photographer who specialized in an early photographic process employing an iodine-sensitized silvered plate and mercury vapor. He did this in New York City, New York from 1849 to 1857. Root also made daguerreotypes of such important people as Henry Clay and Bayard Taylor. Root moved his gallery to 166 Main Street, Dubuque over Glackmeyer and McDonald's clothing store on October 20th, 1857. The 1859 to 1860 Dubuque City Directory listed his studio at the corner of 8th and Main. In 1863 the city directory carried a full-page advertisement listing his business location as "S. Root's Premium Daguerrean and Photographic Gallery" still at 166 Main Street.

1857-1858 Dubuque City Directory. Photo courtesy: Bob Reding
Credit: Bob Redin    1857-1858 Dubuque City Directory
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For more exciting Dubuque history look forward to the presentation on Fredrick Douglas, Sunday, February 5th, at 1pm as John T. Pregler; independent researcher, historian, and author, elaborates on “Historic Tales of Old Dubuque,” in the third-floor auditorium at the Carnegie-Stout Public Library. Pregler was born and raised in Dubuque, Iowa, where his family has resided since the 1840s. You can also find more information here.

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Google Earth Photo
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For more information on this historic presentation and author signing visit the Carnegie-Stout Public Library online at carnegiestout.org. Their mission is to improve the quality of life by providing resources for individual enjoyment, enlightenment, and knowledge, and that enhance the literacy of youth.

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