France

Washerwomen of Paris and the Mi-Carême Celebration

Washerwomen of Paris were known to celebrate a special holiday known as Mi-Carême or mid-Lent, celebrated in the so-called Lent period, which is a period of forty days of deprivation that precedes Holy Week in the Christian calendar. Just like Mardi Gras was the traditional fete of the butcher, Mi-Carême became the holiday of the…

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Emma Hardinge Britten: Spiritualist Medium of the 1800s

Emma Hardinge Britten was an English advocate for the early Modern Spiritualist Movement and is remembered as a writer, orator, and practitioner of the movement. She was born in London, England, in 1823. Her father Ebenezer was a schoolteacher who died in 1834 when Britten was eleven years old.

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Samuel Willey Family Tragedy and Mount Willey

The Samuel Willey family tragedy that resulted in the deaths of the Willey family and the naming of Mount Willey began after Willey moved his family into the area known as Crawford Notch. It was a major pass through the White Mountains of New Hampshire in Grafton County with the high point of the Notch…

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Louis Philippe I: King of the French From 1830 to 1848

Born on 6 October 1773, Louis Philippe became King of the French from 1830 to 1848. He was the son of Louis Philippe II, Duke of Orléans and Louise Marie Adélaïde de Bourbon (sister-in-law to the Princesse de Lamballe). The younger Louis Philippe inherited the title of the Duke de Chartres and was known for…

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Ferris Wheel: The 1800s Invention and Its Inventor

The Ferris wheel was invented because of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. Prior to the Exposition, meetings were held throughout the country and attended by engineers and architects. It was asserted at one of these gatherings that American architects had glorified themselves by the magnificent buildings they had built but that civil engineers had contributed…

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Children of Marie Antoinette: A Brief History of Each

The children of Marie Antoinette included two girls and two boys, the girls being the oldest and youngest. All four children were born in France, welcomed within an eight year period, and well-loved by their parents. However, despite their splendid start and their royal connections all the children of Marie Antoinette and King Louis would…

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Cane Contrivances: Unique Inventions for Users

In the 1700 and 1800s cane contrivances were created that showed “considerable ingenuity.” For instance, Parisians were known to have carried a sword cane for many years and leaden canes were trendy everywhere because they be used as a bludgeon. There were also the popular hollow affairs relied on by smugglers to sneak in expensive…

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Harriet Howard: Mistress to Louis Napoleon (Napoleon III)

Harriet Howard was born in 1823 as Elizabeth Ann Haryett. She was the daughter of a boot maker who made fashionable footwear for the British aristocracy and in addition her grandfather owned the Castle Hotel in Brighton. It was a coastal resort situated on the southern coast of England where people like Jane Austen and…

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Decorative Hair Combs of the 19th Century

Decorative hair combs date to the earliest of times and were created from all sorts of materials. For instance, ancient combs were made from wood, bones, ivory, feathers, and other natural type materials. Sometimes they were “studded” with gems or painted with designs. These early decorative hair combs were also often flat in construction but…

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