by Kristin Holt | Feb 15, 2017 | Articles
As with virtually all activities and behaviors in the Victorian Era, American society developed a set of etiquette rules governing bicycling. One might suppose this list is about signalling (hand gestures) or riding in pairs for protection. You might be quite surprised to see the lengthy list of do’s and dont’s [sic] offered up in a vintage newspaper article from 1895, and in various magazines of the day.
by Kristin Holt | Nov 28, 2016 | Articles
Vintage pie recipes, true to the pioneer and Victorian era experience, look a lot different than modern recipes. In this article, I share recipes from vintage newspapers and Prairie Farmer magazine (1841-1900). One includes “Pie Plant”, an ingredient I remember from the Little House on the Prairie series, but never knew what it actually was!
by Kristin Holt | Oct 29, 2016 | Articles
Victorian-era Americans enjoyed holidays–filled with patriotism, fun, remembrance, religion, and fashion. Halloween began far earlier than the 19th century, when All Hallows Eve was a sacred, religious observation. Come catch a glimpse of our Victorian American ancestors’ fun with Halloween: “Hallowe’en Cake” and its fortune telling methods, parlor games filled with superstition, phrasing for party invitations, historical cabinet cards of Victorian Halloween costumes, and more!
by Kristin Holt | Jul 17, 2016 | Articles
“A cross between guidebook and social commentary, The Spinster Book gives clever and humorous insights on topics such as courting, handling men and women, love letters, marriage and spinsterhood.” I share one of the book’s vignettes on men; how they compare to cats…and a most successful way (for a Victorian lady, at least) to win a man’s heart, an invitation to a live theater or opera production, and his undying adoration. The book was published in 1901. The author (Myrtle Reed)’s sense of humor shines through, and sheds more than a little light on Victorian attitudes about courtship.
by Kristin Holt | Sep 8, 2015 | Articles
Santy (Santa Claus) wasn’t the only celebrity to endorse the well-known, well-loved, imported English Pears’ Soap. Even when the method of celebrity endorsement was used to lesser extent, it’s still implied. Another ad run either in a magazine or newspaper in the latter portion of the century quoted, “I have found it matchless for the hands and complexion.”