Saturday, May 30, 2015

Victorian treasures

     I have just started reading Ruth Finley's The Lady of Godey's: Sarah Josepha Hale, and though I find the writing style a bit outdated (published in the 1930's), Sarah Hale herself is an incredible figure in American history. All I knew of her was that she was the editor of the Godey's Lady's Book magazine for forty years. I did not know she embraced educational reform, women's equality in both the workplace and education (she was one of Elizabeth Blackwell's most ardent supporters. Don't know who Elizabeth Blackwell is? For shame. America's first lady doctor, she is.) as well as a successful author, among many, many other noteworthy achievements. Essentially, she was one of the first (respectable) professional women in America.
     Widowed just before her fifth child was born, Sarah Hale remained a single parent, saw one of her sons off to successful military service, though he died very young while in service; her second son became a successful linguist whose work is still referenced today, and her youngest son was a rousing success at Harvard. One daughter married incredibly well, and the other never married, but was the mistress of a well-respected prestigious girls' school. Wow. Reading about all her successes, I'm afire to check out her editorial work in Godey's Lady's Book, which has been out of print, oh, for forever. Searches on Amazon.com yield either nothing, or terrifyingly expensive antique copies. Much sadness. However......
http://www.uvm.edu/~hag/godey/godeytitle.html
                                                 ...EUREKA!  (Not quite the jackpot, but good enough to start.)

Can you ever imagine wearing something like this?????

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