Monthly Archives: July 2016

Topsy and Chunee

I found these stories on Futility Closet’s blog here and here. We’ve talked once before on this blog about nineteenth-century cruelty to elephants in my post about Jumbo, the Civil Disobedience Elephant, but that story don’t got NOTHIN’ on the … Continue reading

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Victorian Pregnancy Tests

I found this story in Judith Flanders’s The Victorian House (2003). What did women do before the advent of modern pregnancy tests? Apart from wait, I suppose. The answer? Not a lot. Waiting to be sure was kind of your … Continue reading

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Babies R Us

As these articles are quite short, here’s a 2-for-1 deal. From the Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette, April 24, 1851: “There is now residing at Waterford, Hertfordshire, the wife of a respectable licensed victualler, not more than 43 years of … Continue reading

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Idaho Means Nothing

Just a quick one today. I found this story on Futility Closet’s blog here. “Idaho means nothing. When Congress was casting about for a name for a new western territory, an eccentric lobbyist named George M. Willing suggested ‘Idaho,’ which … Continue reading

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Past and Present

I found this in Judith Flanders’s The Victorian House (2003). I don’t know much of anything about art, but I love it when someone walks me through a painting and explains all the little details that I normally wouldn’t notice. … Continue reading

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Pores and Sores

I found this fantastic Victorian medical cure-all advert in the Hereford Journal, August 5, 1857. In case you don’t know, the Victorian era was filled with all kinds of quacks hawking their patented “cure-all” ointments and syrups and pills, and … Continue reading

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Countess Castiglione

I found this fantastic story in Piya Pal-Lapinski’s The Exotic Woman in Nineteenth-Century British Fiction and Culture. In one of Pal-Lapinski’s later chapters, she talks about the influence of relics from the ancient world found in archaeologic digs, and how … Continue reading

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