Wednesday, October 22, 2014

1896 Fashions

Below are some images from 1896 oddly enough these weren't from a fashion magazine but a book on manners and customs, except the first two, they come from another source.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Railroad Approaches to Cincinnati OH, 1875 Part two

This is the second of a three part series on the various rail routes to Cincinnati, OH.

All trains over the Indianapolis, Cincinnati and Lafayette Railroad, the Cincinnati and St. Louis Railroad, and the Cincinnati and Chicago Railroad, pass through the suburbs as follows:
Note.—The White Water Valley Railroad comes in by this approach at Valley Junction, Ind.
La-wrenceburg, Ind. — 25 miles, with 4,000 inhabitants. A pleasantly-situated town; the home of many Cincinnati merchants.
Cleves, Ind.—16 miles, with 500 inhabitants. A flourishing village. Possesses a Presbyterian and a Methodist church and good public-school.
After leaving this place the train passes through a tunnel 1,500 feet in length.
North Bend, Ind.—15 miles, with about 50 inhabitants. The old home of Wm. Henry Harrison, once President of the United States. The old house is yet to be seen, on a delightfully elevated spot. Here the ashes of the aged hero repose, with only a crumbling brick tomb to mark the spot.
Delhi—11 miles, with 50 inhabitants. Handsomely situated on the Ohio River. It has three churches, a Masonic hall, and some tasteful residences.
Trautman's, or South Bend—8 miles; a small village, with Post-office.
Riverside—4 miles, with 500 inhabitants. Naturally a beautiful locality, extending along the Ohio River, and divided into three stations—Riverside, Southside, and Anderson's Ferry. Possesses a few fine residences. It has also a substantial Protestant Episcopal church.
Street-cars connect Riverside with the city.
Sedamsville—2$ miles; a station within the city, in the 21st Ward.

All trains over the Marietta and Cincinnati Railroad pass through the suburbs as follows:
Loveland—26 miles, with 600 inhabitants. The crossing of the Marietta; and Cincinnati with the Little Miami Railroad. It is built on high ground, on the banks of the Little Miami River, and has some beautiful scenery. It possesses three churches, one school-house, a Masonic hall, and has an Agricultural and Horticultural Society that has been in existence twenty years.
Symmes Station—22 miles, with about 150 inhabitants. Adjoins Branch Hill on the Little Miami Railroad. The Little Miami River flows between the two places, and they are connected with a handsome suspension bridge. The scenery in this vicinity is charming.
Remington—20 miles, with about 100 inhabitants. A new suburb, picturesquely situated. About one mile west of this place is Montgomery, an old established village with 500 inhabitants. The place has three churches and a school-house. Omnibuses connect with the trains.
Madisonville—13 miles, with 1,000 inhabitants. An old town, settled in 1809. Possesses three churches and a commodious school house. Has a Literary and Musical Association, besides a Masonic and Odd-fellows' hall.
Oakley—12 miles, with 250 inhabitants. Only five miles from the Court-house by the Madisonville turnpike. Contains a few good residences.
Norwood—10} miles, with 150 inhabitants. A handsome suburb. The Norwood heights, seen on the right, reach the greatest elevation in Hamilton County. An Indian mound, from which there is a most extensive and beautiful prospect, is one of the features of the place. This suburb is becoming the home of many prominent city merchants.
Bond Hill—9 miles, with about 100 inhabitants. A new place, settled in 1870.
Ludlow Grove—7J miles. Adjoins the village of St. Bernard, both with about 1,500 inhabitants. Less than twenty years ago this spot was covered with forest trees. It has now a large school-house, a post-office, and a number of handsome residences.
The Catholic cemetery and church of St. Bernard, with spire 170 feet, are seen from the cars.
Winton Place—(See Approach No. 1.)

All trains over the Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Indianapolis Railroad pass through the suburbs as follows:
Middletown—34 miles, with 4,000 inhabitants, situated pleasantly on the great Miami River. Possesses quite a number of tine residences.
Sharon—17 miles, with 500 inhabitants. A pleasantly situated village. Contains some handsome residences, the homes of Cincinnati merchants.
Newtown—10 miles, with about 600 inhabitants. A handsomely situated suburb. 'Lockland—See Approach No. 1.
Note—The Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Indianapolis track joins the track of the Marietta and Cincinnati Railroad at Ludlow Grove.

The Plum Street Depot, Plum Street, corner of Pearl, is within four squares of the Post-office, erected in 1863. Length, 400 feet; width, 64 feet. Has a ladies' and gentlemen's waiting-rooms, an eating-stand, and telegraph office. Sidings will accommodate 1,000 freight cars. Every twenty-four hours 23 passenger and 12 freight trains arrive, and the same number depart from the depot. The officers of the Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and Louisville Railroad have their offices in the railroad building on Central Avenue and Pearl Streets. The round-house and shops of the different roads are down the track, about one mile from the depot.

The Ohio and Mississippi Depot is the terminus of the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad. All trains over the Ohio and Mississippi Road pass through the suburbs by the same route, as Approach No. 2.
Note—The trains of the Ohio and Mississippi stop only at Delhi.
[graphic][merged small]

The Ohio and Missisippi Depot, West Front Street, corner of Mill Street, is within fifteen minutes' walk of the Post-office. Erected in 1873. Has a ladies' and gentlemen's waiting-room, restaurant, and telegraph office. Every twenty-four hours 6 passenger and 5 freight trains arrive, and the same number depart from the depot. Head offices and shops in Saint Louis. Sidings will accommodate 600 freight cars.

The Little Miami Railroad Depot is the terminus of (he Pittsburg, Cincinnati, and St. Louis Railroad (commonly called the Little Miami, and nicknamed the Pan Handle route); the Louisville, Cincinnati and Lexington Railroad (called also the Louisville Short Line).
Note—The Cincinnati and Muskingum Valley Railroad joins this approach at Morrow.

Plum Street Depot

Monday, October 20, 2014

October Menus

There was a period in time when I would spend one day in the kitchen in prep for a months worth of meals. Today, I simply wing it from what's on sale, etc. Of course, today it's just the two of us and not a group of hungry growing children.

Below are the recommend menus for the month of October from Table Talk ©1891. I find these interesting to see what kind of food was planned and available during that month. Enjoy!

Friday, October 17, 2014


Well the air is chilled this morning in Florida, temps dipped to 52. And since it is October my thoughts naturally drifted over to the pumpkin. There's some interesting information on the pumpkin from the 19th century. Here's a sample from Table Talk ©1891

THE pumpkin and squash belong to the gourd family as do their cousins, the watermelons, canteloupes, cucumbers, etc., and they have been used for food both for man and beast from the earliest ages, forming in many countries the principal part of the fcod of the poorer classes. They cook them in a variety of ways, not only in pies and puddings, but sliced and fr ed like egg plant, made into soups, bread, etc. Some housekeepers use the water in which pumpkin has been stewed, to mix their bread, asserting that it not only improves the color and taste but that it keeps sweet and moist for a longer time. Gourds grow very rapidly, often as much as a foot in one day, reminding us of the story of Jonah for whose shelter the Lord prepared a gourd "which came up in a night and perished in a night," serving for him a double purpose, that of a protection and a lesson. The gourds having very wide leaves and being such rapid climbers are much used in the East to cover arbors, ard their fruit is for the most part edible/ but there is a wild gourd which is poisonous, it has, however, such a very bitter taste that it betrays itself even though so closely resembling a wholesome melon. It was probably this plant which was spoken of in 2 King. 4 : 39. The gourds produce their fruit in such a variety of shapes that it is no worder the natural ingenuity of man should adapt them to various uses, making of their hard shells drinking cups and many other household utensils. Some of them grow from one to three feet in length and from two to four inches in diameter. Of thee bottles are formed. Other fruit is a flattened globe, which, when cut in two, can be used as drinking cups, bowls or dishes, according to size. One kind is scalloped, rather irregularly sometimes; another kind is shaped very much like a hat, others again are oval; some are globular, so that there is an almost endless variety to make dishes of. But it is of the pumpkin itself I want to write. They are of various forms and dimensions from the size of an apple to one weighing two hundred pounds. They are called by various names, vegetable marrow, Hubbard, Kershaw Crookneck, etc. In some localities one kind is considered the best, while in other places the preference is
for another. This is the month for that particularly delectable dainty "pumpkin pie," so esteemed in New England, so often sneered at by those who live south cf Long Island Sound. Whether the pumpkins that grow elsewhere are inferior to those raised on ihe rocky soil of the land of the Pilgrims, or whether only those who have Yankee blood in their veins know how to make them, I cannot tell; but pumpkin pies as made in Yankee land are, to put it mildly, exceedingly good. There, they are baked in deep disnes, merely lined with the thinnest shell of pastry that only serves to hold together the generous pieces, three or more inches thick, that make glad the hearts of the Yankee boys and girls. Outside of New England the average depth of a pumpkin pie is half an inch, and so disguised with spices that one cannot imagine what it is made of, tre only recognizable thing is that we have far more crust than pie. Let us peep into a New England kitchen on Saturday morning, and watch how the huge yellow pumpkin is cut, pared and the seeds scraped out, how the great kettle is filled with the golden pieces, and how when they have stewed soft, they are squeezed in a cloth until the pulp is as dry as potato. It is then put through a colander, some salt and butter added, about an ounce of butter and half a saltspoonful of salt to each pint of the pumpkin; rich, creamy, sweet milk is poured in until th" mixture is like custard; eggs in the proportion of three or four to a pint; and ground spice, mace, cinnamon and nutmeg to taste; sugar enough to sweeten and it is ready for the crust. Earthenware dishes three or four inches deep have been lined with a good, plain crust rolled as thin as possible, and then brushed over with the beaten white of an egg (to keep the liquid from soaking into it). The mixture is poured in to the very top and then the dishes are thrust into the great brick oven, where the pork and beans are seething and browning, the pan of apples bursting their red coats, the brown bread and gingerbread trying to see which will get to the tops of their respective pans first. As we stand there watching we recall the days of our childhood, those bracing last days of the autumn when they were gathering in the pumpkins, the very last of the harvesting. We could see them piled in golden mounds in the barn cellar, our oldest brother selecting one which he hollowed out, and cutting out holes for eyes, nose and mouth would mount it on a pole, with a candle inside.
When it grew dark the candle was lighted, and with this delightfully terrible object in front of us we would march around the house and garden, then stand longingly at the gate watching other pumpkin lantern parades that were given the liberty of the village streets. And we would remember our firm and unshaken belief in Cinderella's coach which was made of a pumpkin. That such a thing could be done, we never doubted when we looked at some of the enormous pumpkins that taxed the powers of a strong man to lift, and our joy overflowed when Abner, our "hired man," fashioned one into a coach for us, mounting it on wheels made of large spools. In this coach our dolls rode in state, personating not only our beloved Cinderella, but various high and lofty dignitaries, even our much venerated General Washington and his wife, until our brothers coaxed the golden chariot from us for the base purposes of a farm wagon. No wonder the wits of early New England seized upon the pumpkin as a symbol of the country, adopting as its emblem "a chubby boy astride of a large pumpkin and blowing the hollow stalk of the vine for a trumpet."
Besides the Yankee recipe for pumpkin pies, there are others, one of them made from the raw pumpkin reads as follows:
Pare and grate raw pumpkin; to one pint of the grated pumpkin, add one quart of milk, two cups of sugar, half a teaspoonful of salt, half a teaspoonful of extract of cinnamon, a little ground mace and three well beaten eggs. Bake in a pan lined with puff paste.
I have never tried this recipe, but I should think it might be very good. Some recipes call for molasses and ginger in pumpkin pies, but to my taste it spoils the delicate flavor of the pie. I can recommend the following:
To a pint of stewed pumpkin that has been pressed through a colander, add a pint of rich cream heated, a quarter of a pound of butter, a quarter of a pound of granulated sugar. Beat eight eggs very light and stir them gradually into the mixture with a tea
spoonful of powdered mace and cinnamon mixed together, a grated nutmeg, a wineglass of rose water and (if you use liquor) a wineglass of brandy. Having beaten the mixture very hard, turn it into dish well buttered, and bake it three-quarters of an hour n a hot oven. To be eaten very cold. Those who prefer home-made yeast and have difficulty in keeping it should try it made of pumpkin, as it will keep longer than any other kind. For their benefit I give the following recipe:
Pare and cut in small pieces a medium sized pumpkin; put them with a large handful of hops into a kettle, and just cover them with water. Boil them until the pumpkin is soft, press it through a colander into a stone jar and when it is just lukewarm, add half a pint of good, strong yeast, stir it well in. Leave the jar uncovered until the next day, then tie it up tightly, and keep it in a cool place. Use as you would any other yeast.
Pumpkin stewed and pressed through a colander, with a little butter and salt added, makes a very nice vegetable for winter use, and is especially good as an accompaniment to roast pork. It also makes one of the most delicious preserves, the recipe for which I gave last year, but it will bear repetition, and, as it is one of the few preserves that can be made in cold weather, it is doubly worth trying.
Take a fine, round pumpkin of a deep, rich color; pare, slice it, and take out the seeds. Cut it into slices as thin as you possibly can, about twice as long as they are broad, and as near the same size as possible. Allow to each pound of the chips, one pound of the best loaf sugar and a gill of lemon juice. Before squeezing the lemons, grate off the yellow rind and mix it with the sugar. Lay the chips in the preserving kettle, sprinkling the sugar between the layers, pour the lemon juice over the whole, cover the kettle and let it stand all night. Next day, put it over the fire, bring it to a boil and let it simmer slowly until the chips are tender" and transparent. Take them up with a perforated skimmer and spread them on large dishes to cool. When cold, put them in jars and pour the boiling syrup over them. Put them away when cold, as you do any other sweetmeat. These chips are as good as they are handsome.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Toccoa Falls

My son attended Toccoa Falls College in Toccoa GA. many years ago. I thought it interesting to find this little article on Toccoa in The New Pictorial Family Magazine ©1846 Then there are two more articles from other perspectives.

The Fall of Toccoa
Narrow passage leads from the roadside to the foot of the fall. Before us appeared the perpendicular face of the rock, resembling a rugged stone wall, and over it "the broke came bubbling down the side of the mountain's side."
The stream had lost most of its fulness from the recent dry weather, and as it became lashed into fury, by its sudden fall, it resembled a silver riband, hung gracefully over the face of the rock, and waving to and fro from the breath of the wind. It remains one of the poetic descriptions, of fairy-land, where we might expect the fays and elves, assemble on a moonlit night to hold their festival on the green bank, while the spray, clothed with all the varied colors of the rainbow, formed a halo of glory around their heads. It is indeed beautiful, surpassingly beautiful: the tall trees reaching but half way up the mountain height, the silver cascade foaming o'er the brow of the hill, the troubled waves of the mimic sea beneath, the lulling sound of the falling water, and the call of the mountain-birds around you—each aud all come with a soothing power upon the heart, which makes you anxious to linger through the long hours of the summer day.
Tearing ourselves away from the enchantment that held us below, we toiled our way up to the top of the fall, using a path that wouud around the mountain. When we reached the summit we trusted ourselves to such support as a small tree, which overhangs the precipice, could give us, and looked over into the basin beneath. Then, growing bolder as our spirits rose with the excitement of the scene, we divested ourselves of our boots and stock inns, and waded into the stream, until we approached within a few feet of the cascade. This can be done with but little danger, as the brook keeps on the even -mil unruffled tenor of its way, until just s it takes its lofty plunge into the abyss below.
I'lie height of the fall is now one hundred and eighty-six feet: formerly it was some ieet higher, but a portion of the rock detached some years ago, by the attrition of the water, and its fall has detracted from the perpendicular descent of Hie stream.
Toceoa forms but one of the beautiful 'ioks in the chain of mountain scenery in the northwestern part of Georgia. There m iy te beheld the grandeur of the lofty V'ou i, the magnificence and terrific splendor oI Tallulah, the quiet and romantic v ie of Nacooche, and the thousand brilliant landscapes that adorn and beautify the f ice of Nature. All these attractions will, doubtless, before another score gf yeiiis has passed away, make Habersham county and its environs the summer retreat of G-orgians from the low country, and help to unite in closer bands the dweller on the seashore and the inhabitant of the mountain.

Toccoa Falls (for route see Clarksville, above), is in the County of Habersham, a few miles from the village of Clarksville.
Falls of Toccoa, Georgia.
The Falls of Toccoa and Tallulah.
The late Judge Charlton, describing this famous scene, says:
Several years have passed away since I last stood at the beautiful Fall of the Toccoa. It was one of the delightful summer days peculiar to the climate of Habersham County. The air had all the elasticity of the high region that surrounded us, and the scenery was of a character to elevate our spirits and enliven our fancy.
A narrow passage led us from the road-side to the foot of the Fall. Before us appeared the perpendicular face of rock, resembling a rugged stone wall, and over it,
" The brook came babbling down the mountain's side."
The stream had lost much of its fulness from the recent dry weather, and as it became lashed into fury, by its sudden fall, it resembled a silver ribbon, hung _ gracefully over the face of the rock, and waving to and fro with the breath of the wind. It reminded me more forcibly than any other scene I had ever beheld, of the poetic descriptions of fairy-land. It is just such a place—as has been often remarked by others—where we might expect the fays and elves to assemble of a moonlight night, to hold their festival on the green bank, whilst the spray, clothed with all the varied colors of the rainbow, formed a halo of glory around their heads. It is, indeed, beautiful, surpassingly beautiful: the tall trees reaching but half way up the mountain height, the silver cascade foaming o'er the brow of the hill, the troubled waves of the mimic sea beneath, the lulling sound of the falling water, and the call of the mountain birds around you, each and all come with a soothing power upon the heart, which makes it anxious to linger through the long hours of the summer day.
Tearing ourselves away from the enchantment that held us below, we toiled our way up to the top of the Fall, using a path that wound around the mountain. When we reached the summit, we trusted ourselves to such support, as a small tree, which overhangs the precipice, could give us, and looked over into the basin beneath. Then, growing bolder as our spirits rose with the excitement of the scene, we divested ourselves of our boots and stockings, and waded into the stream, until we approached within a few feet of the cascade. This can be done with but little danger, as the brook keeps on the even and unruffled tenor of its way, until just as it takes its lofty plunge into the abyss below.
The height of the Fall is now 186 feet; formerly it was some feet higher, but a portion of the rock was detached some years ago by the attrition of the water, and its fall has detracted from the perpendicular descent of the stream.
" Beautiful streamlet! onward glide,
In thy destined course to the ocean's tide!
So youth impetuous, longs to be—
Tossed on the waves of manhood's sea:
But weai*y soon of cloud and blast,
Sighs for the haven its bark hath past;
And though thou rushest now with glee,
By hill and plain to seek the sea—
No lovelier spot again thouFt find,
Than that thou leavest here behind;
Where hill and rock ' rebound the call'
Of clear Toccoa's water-fall."
Source: American Traveler ©1857

found Toccoa a pine town in the pine woods. It has always been there, I believe, but more so since the railroad came. It is eleven hundred feet above the sea, but you do not know it. I slept and ate in a pine hotel, with no lath or plaster or carpet; neither was there any dirt, and the ventilation was perfect, and so were the ham and eggs. The landlord is known to all the country as “Cousin John.” He has another name, I think, but if you go to Toccoa and inquire for “Le Hotel de Cousin Jean,” you will find it. The universal relative knows all about gold, also about amethysts, and also about that curious substance,‘asbestos, which the soil bears abundantly in the county of Habersham and the counties round about.
Lying over night at Toccoa,I made diligent inquiries about the county of Rabun. It is the most perpendicular of Georgia counties. Eighty-one per cent. of its surface is too mountainous for cultivation. It has but one town, Clayton, which has 120 inhabitants; and has produced but one eminent person, Judge Bleckley, of the Georgia Supreme bench, and the Eugene Ware of the same, whose funny decisions appear to afford the Albany Law Journal an endless supply of amusement. Rabun is the corner-stone of Georgia, and possesses the most striking mountain scenery within its borders. It produces gold, asbestos and moonshiners, each indestructible productions.
I learned at Toccoa City that the first object of my quest, Toccoa Falls, was within two miles, but that a sight of Tallula Falls necessitated a journey to the borders of Rabun, sixteen miles away.
This morning the awkward journey was accomplished. The road led over the foot-hills and through the pine and oak forest all the way. We came first to Toccoa Falls. It was in the early, clear morning, before the air had been colored or stained or heated by the advancing day, that I saw this most beautiful of cascades. You leave the team a little way and go up a tiny valley. It is shut in by wooded hills, so narrow that you could toss a stone across it. It is all shade and coolness and seclusion.
You come to a sheer granite wall, black and yellow and brown, and the Toccoa, a small mountain stream of sparkling water, coming from the mountain, arrives at the verge of this wall and drops over it, one hundred and eighty-six feet. There is no roar, no jar, no rising cloud of spray, no Whirlpools, no rushing rapids. All at once the water comes to the wall, springs lightly in a mass into the air, and drops down into a little pool as clear as crystal. First water, then snowy foam, then still water again. A great mass of rock has fallen, and the lower part of the eascade is hidden by it. The fall is slightly parted by a shelving rock at the top, and so seems in two divisions. This is Toccoa Falls. It is within two miles of one of the leading railroads of the South, and is hardly known. I went around and reached the top of the fall, and lay down on the rock where I could almost put my hand in the water after it makes the spring. It was like looking into a cascade of diamonds. Above and below, the Toccoa glides along unnoticed. It is splendid only at one place and for an instant, like a human life illnmined by one great deed. Leaving Toccoa Falls, we went on over the high hills. Monk, the driver, said they were mountains; this one was Walker mountain, and the other, Panther mountain. They did not seem mountains, and are really the foot-hills that finally run into Tallula Ridge, and so on higher and higher to the great Blue Ridge. The country seemed miserably poor, and was well settled, as I think every poor country is. I have ridden ten miles in two of the oldest-settled counties of Kansas within a few years past, over as fertile prairie as ever the sun shone on, without passing near a house; yet on this rough mountain road the cabins were within sight of each other all the way. The houses were all of pine logs and pine boards. The chimneys were either of sand rock or sticks and yellow clay. All the material for the habitations was gathered within afew steps of where they stood. They seemed a part of the mountains and the woods, as a bird’s nest seems part of the tree. If one of these houses burns down, it is only necessary to go out in the woods and get another one. The openness of the sides and the unreliability of the roof would terrify a Kansan, even though he is a resident of the Italy of America. The people who thus humbly lived did not appear to be idlers. At nearly all the houses there was an old-fashioned loom and spinning-wheel on the porch. The doors were all open, and the often solitary room seemed to have known the wisp broom, which was always in sight.
On the road we found one school house, ten miles from Toccoa. It was a little pine log cabin on a hillside, in an old field grown up to scattered pines. The door was fastened with a staple and hasp, with a stick for a lock. I made bold to enter the mountam seminary. It could not have been over twelve feet square; the loose boards which constituted the ceiling were but little over six feet from the floor. There were some pine slab beaches with the bark on, and a pine table for the teacher, and a brush broom. There was a stone fireplace, and in the corner lay an armful of pine knots. I picked up a tattered spelling-book from the floor. A poor place this, I thought, and yet on this humble altar is kindled learning’s sacred flame. This tattered book is the key that unlocks all. This may bring to the mountain child all that is recorded in our English speech of the studies of the wise, the wit of the bright and gay, the valor of the brave. “Stone walls do not a prison make, nor iron bars a cage,” nor can this rude hut shut in or cabin or confine the soul that is inspired of heaven. From this old field the sower may go forth to sow the field which is the world.
Nature has been kind to these hills in one respect. Such a profusion of wild flowers I never saw in any other country. One ravine was lined on both sides with honeysuckles as far as the eye could reach; great patches of violets and a sort of dwarf fieur de lis brightened the ground; and the dogwood reared its head of snow everywhere. The prodigal hand of nature seems to satisfy the natives. I saw, however, a great thicket of yellow roses in front of one cabin, and a shrub with flowers like the fuchsia, which the woman said were called “flower of pear.”
There was among these primitive people some signs of prosperity. The grist mill was about the roughest collection of wooden wheels ever turned by water, but we passed a modern saw mill and several new houses. I hope the country may grow so rich that there will be a change of contour. We did not pass on the road a man, woman, child, horse, cow or dog that was fat.
Source: Southern Letters ©1881

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Too Tight Clothing 1894

Below is an article written in Family Magazine ©1894 from a doctor concerned with clothing being too tight.


THERE is an old French saying to the effect that we must suffer if we would be beautiful. However true this may be as regards moral characteristics, it is certainly erroneous when applied to physical appearance. There is no beauty in deformity— and to the trained and observant eye there is something repulsive in the painfully distorted foot and the contracted waist—too often seen in those who faithfully follow the follies of fashion.
It is difficult to persuade some people that there is beauty merely in perfect health and vigorous life. Yet we cannot see a prettier sight than the healthy play of a group of children at an age when conventional clothing has not placed its restraints upon them. We do not think of the regularity of feature or of details of clothing at such a time; we admire the activity and grace of movement, and—above all—the natural healthiness of the children.
It is to be regretted that, in his exhaustive work on the Philosophy of Clothes, Carlyle did not add a chapter on the influence of tight clothing on happiness. Perhaps he thought the dignity of his subject was too great for him to descend to a criticism of the follies in dress for which so many women (and men) suffer in silence. The first and main object of wearing clothes is to protect the body—to keep it warm in cold weather and cool in hot weather. Mere personal adornment was originally a secondary consideration. Clothes act in virtue of being bad conductors of heat and so preventing the too quick passage of heat to or from the body. Different kinds of materials are efficacious according to the slowness or quickness with which they allow the conduction of heat. Woollen materials are best (hence the value of woollen underclothing, which tends to maintain a very equable temperature of the body—so that we are better able to withstand sudden changes of weather, draughts, etc.), and an order of comparative merit through furs, silk, and cotton, to linen might be drawn up. But in this paper I propose to consider more particularly the influence upon health of tight-fitting clothing.
The more loosely clothing fits, the less it conducts heat, because a layer of air is interposed between it and the body—and air is an exceedingly bad conductor of heat This protecting layer of air enables the body in winter to keep its normal temperature the more easily, because the heat given off at the surface of the body passes slowly through it; whereas if the clothing fit too closely to the skin, heat is dissipated with much greater rapidity. In summer time, on the other hand, the air in which we move is not so warm as the objects upon
which the sun's rays fall directly, and so the surface of the clothes may become much hotter than the air surrounding them. The advantage of the layer of air is obvious also in this case. Therefore we see that in hot and in cold weather, too tightly-fitting clothing defeats the first and great object of wearing clothes and tends to exhaust the bodily strength and make it unfit for work.
Again, the clothing must be so constructed as not to interfere with the freedom of the movement of any part of the body ; otherwise the due performance of some function is interfered with, so that injury results. There are two articles of clothing very frequently worn too tight. A small foot may be a desirable possession, but it is useless to attempt to obtain it by the compression of the foot by too small a pair of boots. Freedom of movement is at once impaired and graceful easy walking is a sheer impossibility. The victim of tight boots is self-revealed by the ungainly gait—a much more conspicuous infirmity than a large foot. In addition to the discomfort necessarily experienced, permanent injury may be caused to the structures of the foot. Deformity of the toes results, and one particular deformity, known as "Hammer toe," is often thus produced, the pressure of the boot causing the toes to override one another. The great toe becomes turned outwards, the ball becomes unduly prominent and walking becomes difficult. A commoner result of a tight shoe is the formation of corns. Whenever any part of the body is subjected to intermittent pressure, thickening of the tissues occurs at that spot, and a corn is the result—which is capable of causing extreme pain, especially if slightly inflamed. The ill-effects of tight shoes are sometimes increased by having the heel (which is generally much too high) placed almost under the middle of the foot and the climax of absurdity is reached by making the front of the shoe point sharply. By this type of shoe ingrowing toe nail—a most painful condition—is often induced.
The corset is also very frequently worn too tight. I recognise the futility of protest. I admit its usefulness, but I also assert its pernicious influence when too tight. As a means of support the corset is doubtless of use, but worn too tightly it presses down the diaphragm, and it interferes with the organs of digestion and circulation. It is notorious how frequently very tightly-laced ladies suffer from chronic indigestion. How often do they faint in church and other places where the heat may be excessive! Nor is the effect of tight clothing confined to such complaints. The bones and organs suffer from its influence, and after death they are found to be deeply grooved corresponding to the points of pressure and greatly displaced. 1 have no doubt whatever but that many of the nervous complaints from which women suffer originate in this way.
Kor are men altogether free from this fault of tight
lacing. Many wear tight belts, especially when about to engage in violent exercise. Rupture may thus be caused.
The frequency with which soldiers are affected has been attributed—no other cause can be assigned—to the tight tunic in which they are habitually dressed. Tight cravats are also injurious ; the neck should be loosely clothed. Tight garters interfere with the flow of blood through the veins, and a tendency to varicose veins results. How great the influence of tight clothing is, is shown by a comparison of the frequency with which soldiers and sailors suffer from diseases of the great blood vessels.
Pressure of clothing from its weight may also act injuriously. The full-flowing long skirts are suspended from the waist, which is thus tightly compressed.
Lastly, tight gloves may cause much discomfort. I know of no more painful sensation than that produced by wearing a tightly-fitting pair of kid gloves on a cold day.
The only defence of tight clothing which has been offered is that it is a dictate of fashion and that it is artistic. !t can never be too fully realised that a bust out of all proportion to a small waist is a defiance of the laws of symmetry, and its incongruity is its most definite and absolute condemnation. Any interference with the natural conformation of the body re-acts by interfering with some bodily function and when the bodily functions are hampered and checked, injury to some particular part generally results. Very often the general health suffers, and another victim is sacrificed to the ruthless dictates of fashion.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Railroad Approach to Cincinnati, OH 1875

This is the first of a three part series on how various railroads worked their way to Cincinnati, OH.

There are five railroad depots, at either of which the traveler who 'approaches Cincinnati by rail is laid down. The Cincinnati, HamilTon And Dayton Depot, the Plum Street Depot, the Ohio And Mississippi Depot, and the Litte Miami Depot are in the city. The Kentucky Central Depot is in Covington.
The Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Depot is the terminus of the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railroad; the Atlantic and Great Western Railroad, or Erie Railway; the Cincinnati, Richmond and Chicago Railroad; the Dayton and Michigan Railroad; and the Cincinnati, Hamilton and Indianapolis Railroad.

All trains over the five roads named pass through the suburbs, as follows:
Hamilton—25 miles, with 13,000 inhabitants. Situated on the Great Miami Riven An important manufacturing town. Has many fine public buildings and extensive manufactories. The home of a large number of Cincinnati merchants.
Glendale—On the right, 15 miles, with 1,500 inhabitants. An incorporated village; laid out in 1851. Possesses several handsome churches and an extensive female college. One of the quietest, handsomest, and most retired suburbs of the city; the home of many of Cincinnati's wealthiest citizens. It is only eleven miles from here by the fine turnpike that leads to the city.
After leaving Glendale the line crosses Mill Creek four times before reaching the depot.
Lockland and Wyoming Station—12 miles; both incorporated villages. Lockland—On the left, with about 1,200 inhabitants. An old established place, situated on the Miami and Erie Canal; bounded on the east by the C, O, C. & I. R. R. (Dayton Short Line), with depot. A thriving place. Possesses some manufactories. Is joined on the east to the incorporated village of Reading, with 3,000 inhabitants. Wyoming—On the right, with about 800 inhabitants. A new place, situated on the Glendale turnpike. The hills of Wyoming, which are crowned with many handsome residences, command an extensive and wide-spread view of the beautiful Mill Creek Valley. The handsome church and most of the fine residences around it seen from the cars were dense woods only a few years ago.
Hartwell—On the left, lOf miles, with 300 inhabitants. Laid out in 1868 by the Hamilton County Building Association. The dwellings are all new, commodious, and of pleasing architecture. Is one of the most beautiful suburbs in the valley.
The large building on the right after leaving Hartwell is the City Infirmary; on the left, the Hamilton County fair grounds and the County Infirmary.
Carthage—On the left, 10 miles, with 1,000 inhabitants. An old established place. A favorite drive from the city by the Avenue road.
The extensive building on high ground to the left is the Longview Lunatic Asylum. The Miami and Erie Canal runs through the asylum grounds between the building and the railroad track. A double track on this line commences here to the city.
WintonPlace—On the right, 64 miles, with about 100inhabitants. A new village upon the borders of the celebrated Spring Grove Cemetery.
On the left is seen the Catholic church and the cemetery of St. Bernard.
The train now enters the beautiful grounds of Spring Grove Cemetery and passes through a line of stately monuments. On the right is visible the Dexter mausoleum, the finest tomb in the place. It is built on the borders of a, small lake, which is crossed by a rustic bridge. There are swans and numerous water-fowl around the lake; and in the Summer time the groves resound with the song of imported and domestic birds. The street-cars come out to the gate of the cemetery, a distance of 6J mile's.
After leaving the cemetery grounds the hills forming the western boundary of Clifton, the finest suburb of the city, become visible on the left, and before arriving at the next station the splendid mansions of Probasco, Shoenberger, and Mrs. Bowler are seen on their summits.
Cumminsville—5 miles, with 4,000 inhabitants. When the whistle sounds for this station the train passes through the exact site on which stood, in the year 1800, a fortification called Ludlow Station. It was the nearest secure military post north of Fort Washington at Cincinnati. The army of General St. Clair was encamped on this spot in 1791. This was the place of last resort by the Indians of the Miami Valley. General Mansfield lived here for a number of years. Cumminsville was founded in 1790. It was for many years an incorporated village, but is now a part of the 25th Ward of Cincinnati. It possesses seven churches of different denominations, some of which are fine buildings. There are two public-schools and a Catholic Orphan Asylum. A large number of beer gardens make it quite a resort for the city. The Marietta Railroad and the Dayton Short Line Railroad have a depot on the left.
From this point to the city the line runs close to Mill Creek, and a little further on at the base of the Western Hills.
The conspicuous red brick building with a turret rising from the roof, and situated on a hill to the right, was originally built as a Baptist educational establishment. It was afterward owned by the Cincinnati Schutzenfest Society as a Summer beer-garden and resort. It is now an Inebriate Asylum.
The large stone building on the left is the House of Refuge. The extensive brick building quite close to it is the city Work House.
After passing these buildings the stock-yards, or cattle market, with their Avenue Hotel, come into view on the left, as also the Avenue, along which, in favorable weather, many fast teams, driven by the sporting men of the city, may be seen from the cars.
Brighton—2 miles, on the left; another station within the city.
From this point to the depot a view of the west end of the city and its surrounding high hills may be obtained. A large proportion of the streets seen to the left have been built within the last few years. The process of filling up the low ground at each side of the creek is being pushed forward very rapidly, and when accomplished the view from the cars in this direction will be less extensive.
The Cincinnati, Hamilton and Dayton Railroad Depot, corner of Fifth and Hoadley Streets, is within fifteen minutes' walk of the Postoffice. Erected in 1864; length 400 feet; width 60 feet. Has a ladies' and gentlemen's waiting room, a restaurant, and telegraph office. Sidings will accommodate 800 freight cars. Every twenty-four hours twelve passenger and five freight Cincinnati, Hamilton And Dayton Railroad Depot.
trains arrive, and the same number depart from the depot. The officers of the road have their offices in the second story of the building. A round-house, capable of housing twenty-five locomotives, and extensive machine shops, employing forty-five machinists in building and repairing, are located alongside the depot.
Cincinnati Hamilton & Dayton Railroad Depot

Monday, October 13, 2014


Have you ever wondered what ship your Historical Characters were traveling on during the 19th Century. Below is a list of various ships that comes from Illustrated Marine Encyclopedia ©1890

Ship. — Full-rigged-ship A three masted ship fore-mast, main-mast, and mizen-mast, each mast is fitted with a topmast, topgallant-mast and royal-mast; all are square rigged, i. e : rigged with yards and square sails. See Plates 73, 74 & 75.
Four-mast-ship. A vessel having four square rigged masts, viz: tore-mast, main-mast, mizen-mast, and jigger-mast. See Plate 76.
Barque. — Bark. A three masted vessel; fore mast, main-mast, and mizen-niast; the two foremast masts are square rigged as in a ship; the after or mizen-mast has no yards, being fitted with a topmast only, and carries a gaff-sail (called the spanken and a gaff-topsail. See Plate 77.
Four-mast-barque. A four masted vessel; fore-mast, main-mast, mizenuiast, and jigger-mast; the three foremost masts are square rigged, the hindmost mast carries no yards, being fitted only with a topmast. See Plate 78.
Barquentine. — Barkentine. A three masted vessel ; fore-mast, mainmast, and mizen-mast. the fore-mast only is square rigged ; the main-and mizen-masts are fitted with topmasts only. See Plate 7tf.
Brig. A two masted vessel; fore-mast and main-mast both square rigged i. e: exactly as the two foremost masts of a full rigged ship, or a barque. See Plate 80.
Snow. Is a Brig as just described to which the name „ Snow" is by some given, when .. Snow-masts " i. e: spars about the thickness of a ..Studding-sail-boom" (and on which „ Trysails" are carried) are fitted close abaft and connected to the ordinary lower-masts of a tt Brig".
Brigantine. A two masted vessel; fore-mast and main-mast, the foremast is square rigged, and the after or main-mast (of a greater length than the tore-mast) carries a boom-sail called „ main-sail'1, and is fitted with a topmast, carrying a gaff-topsail. See Plate 81.
Topsail-schooner. — A two masted vessel ; fore-mast and main-mast; the fore-mast is fitted with yards and square sails, which are lighter than those of a brigantine, and carrying a loose square foresail (only used when sailing with a fair wind); the main, or after mast is rigged like the after mast in a brigantine. See Plate 82.
Three-mast-topsail-schooner. A three masted vessel: fore-mast, mainmast, and mizen-mast. — The fore-mast is rigged like the fore-mast in a topsail-schooner; and the two after masts are fitted with boom-sails, and gaff-topsails, like those in a barquentine. See Plate 79.
Fore and aft schooner. — Bermuda-schooner. — Common-schooner. A two masted vessel; the lower masts are generally long, and fitted with a short topmast without yards; and they carry only boom-sails and gaff-topsails. See Plato 82.
Three-mast fore and aft schooner. A three masted vessel; usually with long lower masts, and short topmasts; on which boom-sails and gafftopsails are carried. See Plate 83.
Chasse-maree. — Lugger. A small three masted vessel (french); with fore-mast, main-mast, and jigger-mast; on all of which lug-sails are carried. See Plate 84.
Cutter. A one mast vessel; with topmast and running-bowsprit, carries a mainsail, gaff-topsail, staysail, and jibs. See Plate 84.
Sloop. In the mercantile-marine this term is not clearly defined ; — on the Continent it is applied to a vessel frequently of considerable size, having one mast and rigged as a Cutter, but of less finished design and neatness both in the form of the hull, as well as the rig; they are employed in the transport of cargoes over sea, for fishing purposes, etc.
In England the distinction between a Cutter and a Sloop, appears to be; that a Cutter is fitted with a long running bowsprit, and carries a fore-staysail, and one or more jibs; while a Sloop is fitted with a short standing bowsprit (also called ..Bumkin") on which one head-sail only, comprising fore-staysail and jib in one, is carried.
Yawl. A Yacht or other small vessel built and rigged as a Cutter, but having in addition a small mast, called jigger-mast, on which a lateen-sail is carried, placed at her extreme after end.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

1893 Fashions

Here's an article about fashion from The Illustrated American ©1893. Followed by a detailed bodice on a lady.

A JUDICIOUS critic remarks "that there is almost as much art displayed in the putting on of a hat as in concocting the article itself." Indeed, unless a woman is prepared to take infinite pains in this matter, she should not even attempt to wear these tricky new shapes at all. Iiut they are very beguiling. For example, there is a wide felt hat of old pink, with the brim a trifle raised at the side, which, properly adjusted, frames the face delightfully. It was dressed with osprey and ostrich plumes, and a large velvet bow and buckle; but then, the shape is the principal thing.
A set of prett) bridesmaids' hats, now on exhibition, have wide brims of soft brown felt, the crowns of velvet in a rich shade of blue, with blue ospreys and brown ostrich feathers at one side. Soft felt brims, with velvet or cloth crowns of a contrasting shade, offer one of the smart novelties of the season. Some of the brims are cut up the back in two places, and the middle part curves upward like a high comb. The trimming is merely a wide spreading bow of ribbon with a full aigrette set up smartly in front.
The softly curving Gainsborough, with its crown of plumes and drooping feathers, is becoming to every face and continues to be exceedingly fashionable. A touch of color is frequently added, and always with good taste, in the shape of two or more deep crimson or petunia tinted velvet roses.
The boat shaped hat in felt, with a colored cloth crown and ostrich tips, is one of the successes of the season.
A bonnet of the Second Empire has a buckle in front made of turquoises and rubies, with square pointed ends standing well out at each side. The crown, of tomato velvet, is perfectly square.
A charming bonnet for an old lady is made of petunia colored velvet and the pretty velvet roses of the same shade that are so very fashionable. An elongated bow of red piece velvet formed another bonnet, that was longer in shape and suited to the hair dressed low on the neck. It had donkey ears of velvet standing up over the forehead and turning downward at the back.
The very best modes from the Medicis period will be adopted as time goes on, and even now some beautiful gowns are made after the epoch when Catharine ruled France. A costume of the time of Henri Trois is of a bold patterned yellow brocade, bordered with mousse mirroire velvet, edged with jet. The bodice is square, with an ample rape of velvet.
Velvet capes with narrow fur borderings are quite a feature of the season. They can be small and full, reaching just to the shoulder; or longer, hovering halfway between the hip and knee; or very long, almost touching the ground. Of velvet or cloth, with narrow fur binding, they are worn by day and night. Some are entirely of sable. In violet velvet, lined with silk just matching the sable trimming, these cloaks are most beautiful. This color is in vogue avjain, for dresses as well as millinery, and it combines with sable or beaver, the two paramount favorites of the day. Any woman who possesses sables is to be envied, for they are the acme of modishness and can be used tt> any extent.
Violet is so much the fashion of the moment that the shade is even used in veils which are powdered with graduated chenille dots, the largest being around the edge.
Quilted silk lea gowns, especially in old pink, with a trim^ ming of narrow fur, are cosy winter garments. Most of them have a Watteau back falling from the yoke. One recently prepared for a bride was in the palest shade of old pink satin, powdered with little flowers in a deeper shade, and had two widths of the same colored velvet, split in half, fastened to the front of the arm hole, and then apparently tossed over the shoulders and allowed to fall at the back down each side of the plait. The front was plain and straight, with a deep jabot of point lace from neck to waist.
The daintiest of petticoats are prepared for evening wear, such as white silk, with white, pale p.'.ik, blue or gold colored flounces, partially veiled with cream colored lace. This flouncing can be bought by the yard.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Victoria BC

Has it's roots in the California Gold Rush but unlike a lot of towns, it did not die when the rush was over. Below is an excerpt from "Victoria Illustrated" ©1891 Click the link to Google books for the entire volume.

Fifty years ago, before immigration to the shores of the Pacific was attracted by the discovery of gold in California, Fort Victoria had an existence. The gold seekers were preceded by the fur dealers, and the first house in what is now the Queenly Capital of British Columbia, was that of one of the adventurous traders of the Hudson's Bay Company. As years rolled on, the importance of the post on the southern extremity of Vancouver Island became more and more recognized. Population increased; the Hudson's Bay Company, with its store-keepers, trappers and traders, forming one important class; while another, drawn from the ships of the Royal Navy, which paid frequent visits to the shores of Vancouver Island, more gradually became a noticeable feature of its society. C Then came news of gold discoveries in various parts
of the country tributary to the struggling settlement, and then the influx of the army of the Argonauts. From California, where they tasted the sweet and the bitter of the gold fever, the treasure-seekers, with pick and shovel, poured into Victoria, equipped themselves, and V^ passed on in hundreds and thousands to the Fraser, or to ariboo. The history of Victoria's life during the "sixties," is the history of many places in the West, which gold finds have made famous in a day.
The mad search for riches made the village a city— and one, while the excitement was at its height, of con
isiderable population and constantly changing character. After the fever came the reaction, which even more tried the young and struggling city. Many of its citizens, however, knew its worth, and- Victoria passed the crisis safely, and commenced the steady, substantial growth, which has led to its recognition to-day as the wealthiest city—for its size—upon the continent.

Here's a pic looking north on Government St.
Note the telegraph poles and large lightening rods.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

On Vacation

Hi all,

Normally I put posts together to automatically go up while I'm on vacation but I've been hard at work on galleys for "The Shepherd's Betrothal coming out next spring.

So, you'll have to forgive me but I won't be posting this week, with the exception of Wednesday where I did have a quick fashion tidbit.

See you next week.

In His grip,


Below is an illustration Plate from Home Doctoring with some information about the poisonous plants. Not all of the illustrations were mentioned in the text. I left them blank for you to fill in with your own research.

1) Hellebores, the.—The Green Hellebore (Helleborus viridis).
The White Hellebore (Veratrum album).
The Black Hellebore, or Christmas rose (Helleborus niger).
The Foetid Hellebore (Helleborus fcetidd).
All of these are powerful poisons, the white hellebore especially so.
Symptoms. — Vomiting, purging, giddiness, dilatation of the pupils, convulsions, insensibility, great heat of the throat, and tightness, with severe pain in the stomach.
Treatment.—Vomiting should be excited by large doses nf solution of gum and other mucilaginous fluids (such as milk, white of egg, etc.), and injections of the same materials should be thrown up into the bowel.
Coffee should then be given freely, and acidulous fluids and camphorwater.
The roots and leaves of this plant are both poisonous, the roots especially.


3)Meadow Saffron (Colchicum autumnale). Symptoms. — A burning pain in the gullet and stomach, violent vomiting, and sometimes bilious purging.
Treatment. — Give some mild emetic, thus :—
Ipecacuanha wine, 5 ounce.
Honey, 1 tablespoonful.
Milk, a teacupful. Stir up and mix thoroughly, and let the patient take it at a draught. This should be repeated every quarter of an hour till vomiting sets in. Of course the dose of ipecacuanha wine should be smaller for children, one-half or one-fourth of the above quantity being ample for a child under five years old.
Then give opium as follows (to adults only)
Powdered opium, 3 grains.
Confection of dog rose, sufficient to make a small mass with the opium. Divide this into six pills, and let the patient have one every four hours, until the symptoms of poisoning abate.
Tincture of opium, 1 fluid drachm.



2)Henbane (Hyoscyamus). (See Plate.) Symptoms.—Vomiting, double vision, dilatation of the pupils, sleepiness, loss of muscular power, a peculiarly tremulous motion of the limbs, flushing of the countenance, heat and weight of head, giddiness, fulness of the pulse, and general excitement.
If the dose has been a large one, the symptoms will be aggravated, there will be loss of speech, delirium, coma, coldness of the surface, and jerkings of the muscles.
Treatment.—As soon as possible, empty the stomach by emetics, and give acidulous drinks; if, however, the poison has entered the system, purgatives must be given.
The seeds are the most poisonous, the leaves next, and the roots last.

3)Yew (Taxus baccatd). (See Plate.) Symptoms.—Professor Taylor gives the symptoms of poisoning by this plant as follows: —" Convulsions, insensibility, coma, dilated pupils, pale countenance, small pulse, and cold extremities are the most prominent; vomiting and purging are also observed among the symptoms."
Treatment.—As in many other vegetable, indeed it might safely be said in all poisons, vomiting should be excited, and this is best done, and perhaps in the quickest, safest manner by an emetic of mustard, salt, and water. Should the convulsions be very acute, and there be great heat of head, cold should be applied. If the pulse is very small, and the prostration of the patient is great, as soon as the stomach is thoroughly emptied, brandy should be given.
It is commonly supposed that the leaves of this plant are not poisonous when fresh, but this is erroneous. They are at all times poisonous. The berries also are very dangerous, more especially to children, as they have an agreeable taste, and look tempting. The danger of the leaves is not so much for the human race as it is for cattle, who are fond of eating them.


Hemlock (Conium Maculatum). (See Plate.) Symptoms.—This plant attacks the muscular power, and causes paralysis of the limbs, sickness, pain in the head, drowsiness, and sometimes it so affects the muscles of respiration as to cause death.
Treatment.—The stomach should be evacuated by some powerful emetic, such as the following :—
Sulphate of zinc, 20 grains.
Dissolved in water, a wineglassful.
Mustard, I teaspoonfuL
Common salt, I teaspoonfuL
Warm water, a tumblerful.

After this, cold water should be applied to the head. Vinegar and water (see under Deadly Nightshade) should be administered.
The poisonous properties of this plant reside in the leaves, which somewhat resemble parsley, for which they have occasionally been mis'aken. The seeds and the root are also poisonous.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

1843 Fashions

I realize this is much earlier in the century than a lot of people are writing in but it's always fun to see what was in style from various years.

Ladies or Women's Fashions

Women & Children

Cloaks & Coats



Tuesday, September 30, 2014


Eww, right? Except they were quite common in medicine during the 19th Century. Here's what "The Home Book of Health and Medicine" ©1834 says:
The leech is a well known species of worm that lives in water, and is applied to various parts of the body, to draw blood for the cure of disease. The medicinal leech has a flat slimy body, composed of rings, tapering towards the head; it is commonly about two inches long, about the thickness of a goose-quill; but it can lengthen and shorten itself very much. The bite of those leeches, which are found in stagnant waters and marshes, is said to cause pain and inflammation; such leeches, therefore, as well as the horse-leech, are not used, and those are preferred which are taken in the summer season, in waters having a clear sandy bottom. A leech attaches itself to any substance to which it wishes to fix, by an apparatus, constructed on the principle of a leather-sucker, which it has at both ends; the one at the head being like a horse-shoe, with a triangular mouth in the centre, and that at the other end being circular. When they fix on the body, they inflict a small wound of three little flaps, from which they suck blood until they are gorged, or till they are forced to quit their hold; this is best done by sprinkling on them a little salt.
The cases are very numerous in which leeches are useful; and in children, where it is so difficult to get blood from a vein, leeches furnish an excellent resource. Leeches are useful in the various inflammatory diseases, as ophthalmia, sore throat, rheumatism, tooth-ache, inflammation of the bowels, and uterus; in measles and scarlet fever, in hooping-cough, in head-ache, in bruises and in piles.
It is sometimes difficult to get leeches to fix; they should be kept hungry, and taken out of the water for some minutes before they are to be used, and should be dried with a soft cloth immediately before they are applied. The part should be well washed with soap and water, then with milk and water, and wetted with blood or syrup, and if there be many strong hairs, they should be shaved oft'. A large leech will draw about an ounce of blood, that is about n table-spoonful; and when they come off, the bleeding may be encouraged to a considerably greater extent, by bathing the parts with warm water, or by applying large poultices of bread and milk, or applying cupping glasses. It is sometimes difficult to stop the bleeding, and the surgeon is sent for in great alarm, especially when leeches have been applied to young children. The bleeding may generally be stop ted by proper pressure, with a little lint, or similar downy substance, for a due length of time, though this is sometimes very difficult, when there is no bone to press against; touching the wound with lunar caustic, will almost certainly succeed; but we must take care that the flowing blood do not wash the caustic down about the neighbouring parts. Sometimes the wounds made by leeches, give rise to a good deal of pain, swelling, and extensive inflammation. The best application is a cooling lotion of-sugar of lead, or diluted alcohol and water, or vinegar and water. If the pain and tension continue long, an emollient poultice of bread and milk will be useful.
Salt has been thrown on the animal to make it disgorge the blood which it has sucked, but the leech is generally killed in the experiment. A more easy way to discharge the blood, and save the animal, is to hold it in the hand, and gently squeeze it in a napkin, from the head downward; the blood flows copiously from what may appear the anus, or through the ruptured extremity of the intestinal canal, and the worm is not essentially injured.
Leeches are best kept in a bottle, half filled with pure spring or river water, covered with gauze or fine muslin. It is better not to put bran or any other substance into the water, but to.change it pretty frequently. Leeches are said to be very sensible to the electrical changes of the atmosphere.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Different Preserves

Have you ever heard of Celery Preserves? I hadn't and that's what caught my attention for this post. Below are some recipes for some not so common preserves. Granted they may be more common in your neck of the woods or in your experience over mine. We all come to writing with our own unique backgrounds.

CELERY PRESERVE—Cut the blanched part of the celery in pieces, and boil it in water with a large quantity of ginger until it is quite tender, then throw it into cold water and allow it to remain for an hour. Put it over a slow fire in good syrup, with some pieces of ginger, and let it remain simmering for an hour. Cool it again, and in the meantime thicken the syrup by further evaporation. Put the celery in again, and repeat the same process. After a third simmering in this way, taking care to keep the syrup thick, put the celery into pots, and cover with a syrup.

Watermelon Rinds (Yes, I've heard of these.)
To Preserve Watermelon Rinds.—Do not cut your rinds too thin ; pare off the outside green rind; soak them two days in clean soft water, and then drain them. Take six pounds of sugar and three pints of water, boil to a thick syrup; then add your watermelon rinds; boil until they are clear; flavor with orange flower water; cool, and put away in jars for use. ,

HEDGE PEARS.—Take four pounds of sugar and two pounds of water, boil to a middling thick syrup. Pare six pounds of good ripe hedge pears, and leave them whole. Boil these in your syrup until done; cool, flavor with orange flower water, and put away in jars for use.

These I have made, not these recipes but this kind of jam.
Rhubarb Jam.—Cut into pieces about an inch long (not peeled), put three-quarters of a pound of powdered lump sugar to every pound of rhubarb, and leave till morning; pour the syrup from it and boil till it thickens, then add the rhubarb and boil gently a quarter of an hour; tie down with tissuepaper dipped in white of egg. It will keep good for a year, and is excellent.

Rhubarb Preserve.—To every six pounds of rhubarb add six pounds of sugar and a quarter of a pound of bruised ginger; the rhubarb to be cut into pieces two inches long and put into a stone jar, with the sugar in layers, till the sugar is dissolved ; take the juice or syrup and boil it with the ginger for half an hour, then add the rhubarb and boil another half hour.

QUINCE JELLY. — Take some sound, yellow quinces, which are not over ripe; peel them, cut them in quarters, and boil them in as much water as will cover them. When they have been well boiled, squeeze them through a linen cloth, clarify the juice in a filtering-bag, weigh it, and put it with three-quarters of its weight of sugar in a brass kettle. Do not forget to put in a piece of cinnamon. Cook the whole together until it has become a jelly. Take it from the fire, and tie up in pots when it is cold.

CRAB APPLE Jam — Pare the crab apples when quite ripe, put them into a stone jar, cover it well, and put it in a pan of ‘boiling water for an hour and a half. Then prepare the syrup with two pounds of sugar in half a pint of water for every pound of the apples. Clarify the syrup. Then put the apples into it and boil the whole to a jam.
Source: The Godey's Lady's Book Receipts and Household Hints ©1870