People think that government documents are unbelievably boring. Most of the time they're right, but there are just enough
interesting documents to keep us eagerly opening boxes, looking for the next treasure.
An example is a book I came across recently called Rum War at Sea. It details the often futile efforts
of the Coast Guard to stem the tide of liquor smuggling during Prohibition.
We recently had the opportunity to visit the Hawaii Agricultural Research Center. They have a marvellous library, full
of intriguing books and journals on all sorts of topics. One gem I came across (not a gov doc, alas) was entitled Tenants
of an Old Farm
by Henry McCook, published in 1885. It's a marvellous account of insect life on a farm, with the sort
of illustrations you typically see in 19th century books. I've posted one here for your amusement. If you want to look at
more illustrations, visit http://www.acnatsci.org/library/collections/fairytaleworld/tenants/tenants.html