Skip to Content

Articles Categorized History

Lady Mount-Edgcumbe, Faro’s Daughter

Have you ever taken a rapid, probably shallow breath, and said, “I feel like my hair is on fire.”? It isn’t, of course. It’s the same hair you’ve always had. It still sits on your head, and the flames that seem real to you are entirely invisible. You might be interested to find out that

Yule Tide Festivals

Winter Solstice on December 21 in the Northern Hemisphere is both the shortest day of the year, and the first day of Winter. The word solstice finds its root in the Latin words sol for sun and sistere, meaning “to stand.” The term also refers to new birth, as a new year rises from the

The Miraculous Gifts of St. Nicholas

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there. These often over-looked lines from Clement Clarke Moore’s famous poem about the night before Christmas raise at least two pertinent questions: Who was St. Nicholas? And, why does he need stockings? The Real St. Nicholas St. Nicholas

Time to “Deck the Halls”

With December almost upon us, it’s time to think about decorating for the festive season — a custom with long roots in our cultural history. Among the songs of the season, Deck the Halls seems to be about decorating dwellings and shops for Christmas, but, like many customs, the song and its meaning has changed

The Rehabilitation of Victoria Woodhull

Victoria Woodhull was the first woman to address a Congressional Committee and the first woman to run for president. She and her sister were known as spiritualists as well as being the first women to own a newspaper and a stock brokerage. But Victoria Woodhull’s most notorious reputation was her advocacy for free love. Thomas

The Sewing Machine Revolutionized Stitchery

The sewing machine, beloved by stitching hobbyists and home fashionistas, was invented by French tailor Barthelemy Thimonnier. In 1830 he patented a mechanical device that could produce a simple chain stitch that would allow uniforms for the French army to be mass produced, rather than sewn by hand. Thimonnier’s innovation was not well-received. Realizing mechanized

Aphra Behn: Restoration Playwright

In 1929 Virginia Woolf published A Room of One’s Own in which she argued that if a woman is going to write fiction, she must have money and a room of her own. Woolf developed her theme by looking at female writers in history, many of whom did not publish their writings. In her observations

Lady Mary Wroth & the English Renaissance

When we think of women novelists writing in the English language, Jane Austin is usually the first name that comes to mind. It’s fair to say the Jane Austin was the first to have a popular impact, but the first female author writing in English was Mary Wroth (1587-1653). Jane Austin’s work came out 200

An 18th Century Formal Dinner

Over the past two weeks, we’ve dressed a lady and a gentleman in 18th century clothing, so it seems only fair that we give these fashionable people a destination. In this case, they are attending a formal dinner. Table manners were different in the 18th century. As you may have observed from Jane Austin dramas,

An 18th Century Woman Gets Dressed

I write historical fiction based on the lives of actual women. This involves a great deal of research on the person being profiled and the world in which she lived, as well as information on events that occurred. Saxon Heroines, for example, focused on the lives of four royal women in 7th century Northumbria. Information