A Note on Methodology
For the first phase of this experimental project, runaway advertisements were sourced from the Connecticut Courant, focusing on the years 1765-1820. A smattering of ads from later in the nineteenth century and from different sources were added for broader context. Ads were identified using the America's Historical Newspapers subscription database. Because of the limits of OCR on older and poor quality newspapers, the ads presented here are not comprehensive. Indeed, they represent only a small, random sampling of the data. Manual spot checks of individual issues suggest that there are as many as 20-30 runaway ads for every 1 identified by keyword search alone.
All spelling, punctuation, and typos reflect the original content of the ad. Of course, there are bound to be errors in our transcriptions as well. If in doubt, it is always best to check the original source.