Christen Carter and Ted Hake bring an energy and passion to their new book, Button Power: 125 Years of Saying It with Buttons, you would expect from two of America’s foremost button experts. What is surprising, however, is just how wildly entertaining and informative their work is.

Who knew the button could be so captivating?

Button Power: 125 Years of Saying It with Buttons ($24.95/hardcover)

Button Power: 125 Years of Saying It with Buttons ($24.95/hardcover)

Handsomely designed and filled with lively insights and a contagious enthusiasm, Button Power, with the help of more than 1,500 images of pin-back buttons, provides a “people’s history,” capturing the big and small moments that have come to define us as a country. It’s a lot to ask of the humble button, but Carter and Hake pull it off with great panache and delight.

Politicians, artists, athletes, actors, pop musicians, mascots, advertisements and causes of all shapes and sizes fill 192 pages. Offering a cultural touchstone, Button Power is equal parts historical, provocative and nostalgic, with a heavy dose of fun sprinkled throughout – heady stuff for such tiny wonders.

Hake is the consummate historian and Carter brings the fervor of a true believer in the power of the button. Together they reveal how buttons build community while reflecting our dreams and aspirations.

“Buttons reveal a zeitgeist of the moment,” Carter says. “Our hope with the book is to have people appreciate buttons not necessarily as art forms but as wearable identity. Buttons connect us to something bigger than ourselves.”

Carter and Hake do much the same, impressively connecting readers with these pint-sized marvels.

To see some of Ted and Christen's favorite buttons, check out Buttons They Stand Behind.

For more button fun, check out Celebrating Pin-Back Buttons.

Teddy Roosevelt 1910 button commemorating his return from safari in Africa. Put out by the Goerke Co.,this rare item is considered one of the top Roosevelt pin-backs. Value: $9,000. 

Teddy Roosevelt 1910 button commemorating his return from safari in Africa. Put out by the Goerke Co.,this rare item is considered one of the top Roosevelt pin-backs. Value: $9,000. 

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