Georgian Era

The History of Goody Two-Shoes

The History of Goody Two-Shoes (with or without a hyphen) was a children’s story written anonymously in 1765, published by John Newbery, and a variation of the story of Cinderella. Goody Two-Shoes was the nickname of a poor orphan named Margery Meanwell who goes through life with one shoe until a rich gentleman gives her…

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A Georgian Era Tragedy at a Puppet Show

A Georgian Era tragedy at a puppet show in 1727 resulted in 78 people dead, many of them children. The story begins with a man who owned a family-run puppet show who was named either Richard Shepherd (or perhaps Richard or Robert Sheppard). As he was passing through the village of Burwell, about 10 miles…

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William Corder and the Red Barn Murder

In 1827, 24-year-old William Corder committed a notorious murder when he shot his lover, the daughter of a mole-catcher, 26-year-old Maria Marten. The murder came to be known as the Red Barn Murder because it happened after Corder arranged to meet Marten at a local landmark in Polstead, Suffolk, England, called the red barn. Corder…

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Conjurors and Conjuring in the 1700s

  Conjurors and conjuring existed long before the 1700s, and in its simplest form, conjuring was a performance of tricks that appeared to be magical and usually involved some sort of sleight of hand. Well before conjuring became popular in the 1700s, conjuring performances were given in antiquity and in the middle ages. However, there…

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Kensington Gardens in the 1700 and 1800s

Kensington Gardens sits west of Hyde Park, which it once adjoined. Kensington Gardens were created when they were cut off from Hyde Park by George II’s wife, Queen Caroline, in 1728. Henry Wise and Charles Bridgeman were tasked with the job of creating the gardens. Bridgeman created the recreational lake known as the Serpentine between…

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The Despard Plot, Trial, and Execution

Colonel Edward Marcus Despard was an Irish soldier who served in the British Army, and, during the American Revolutionary War, he and his troops were victorious at the Battle of the Black River. His success was part of the reason that he was later appointed Superintendent in British Honduras. However, in 1790, he was recalled…

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