Anarchival

The past is not outdated
You Call This a Hat?
My thoughts exactly.
from The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts / Billy Rose Theatre Division

You Call This a Hat?

My thoughts exactly.

from The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts / Billy Rose Theatre Division

Breakfast Bill of Fare
I’m really loving the archival menu collection from the NYPL and I really can’t get over the large breakfasts that seemed to be standard in the 1800s.
A little on the collection itself (from the NYPL website):
"The menu collection originated through the energetic efforts of Miss Frank    E. Buttolph (1850-1924), a somewhat mysterious and passionate figure, whose    mission in life was to collect menus. In 1899, she offered to donate her existing    collection to the Library — and to keep collecting on the Library’s behalf.    Presciently, director Dr. John Shaw Billings accepted her offer and for the    next quarter century Miss Buttolph continued to add to the collection. Her principal    method of acquisition was to write to every restaurant she could think of, soliciting    menus. When letters failed, she often marched into a restaurant and pleaded    her case in person. She also placed advertisements in trade publications like    The Caterer and The Hotel Gazette, but just as often, published    news of her collection prompted outright contributions of specimens from around    the world. Three times between 1904 and 1909, The New York Times wrote    about her and the collection, noting once that “she frankly avers that she does    not care two pins for the food lists on her menus, but their historic interest    means everything.” Miss Buttolph added to the collection of more than 25,000    menus until her death in 1924. The collection has continued to grow through    additional gifts of graphic, gastronomic, topical or sociological interest,    especially but not exclusively New York-related.”
Some things I am surprised about: steaks, pig’s feed, fish balls, a la mode beef. All the same, there was still the option to have eggs any style!

Breakfast Bill of Fare


I’m really loving the archival menu collection from the NYPL and I really can’t get over the large breakfasts that seemed to be standard in the 1800s.

A little on the collection itself (from the NYPL website):

"The menu collection originated through the energetic efforts of Miss Frank E. Buttolph (1850-1924), a somewhat mysterious and passionate figure, whose mission in life was to collect menus. In 1899, she offered to donate her existing collection to the Library — and to keep collecting on the Library’s behalf. Presciently, director Dr. John Shaw Billings accepted her offer and for the next quarter century Miss Buttolph continued to add to the collection. Her principal method of acquisition was to write to every restaurant she could think of, soliciting menus. When letters failed, she often marched into a restaurant and pleaded her case in person. She also placed advertisements in trade publications like The Caterer and The Hotel Gazette, but just as often, published news of her collection prompted outright contributions of specimens from around the world. Three times between 1904 and 1909, The New York Times wrote about her and the collection, noting once that “she frankly avers that she does not care two pins for the food lists on her menus, but their historic interest means everything.” Miss Buttolph added to the collection of more than 25,000 menus until her death in 1924. The collection has continued to grow through additional gifts of graphic, gastronomic, topical or sociological interest, especially but not exclusively New York-related.”

Some things I am surprised about: steaks, pig’s feed, fish balls, a la mode beef. All the same, there was still the option to have eggs any style!

Daisie M. Helyar, 1906-1910 Scrapbook

awesomearchives:

Daisie Miller Helyar’s scrapbook has been digitized as part of the ongoing Notable Women of Simmons digital scrapbook project, which offers access to unique historical artifacts documenting the lives of women who attended Simmons College.

Daisie’s scrapbook contains evidence of an intelligent, good-humored, and adventurous young woman who both seized the opportunity for a college education and took advantage of the many diversions of Boston, Massachusetts.

This is a really nice digital exhibit. Each item on a page has its own description. 

I wonder if people a hundred years from now will be looking through tumblr accounts for a glimpse into this part of our lives.

Girls Had Three Options In the 19th Century
According to The Young Lady’s Guide women had three possible futures:
1.”Shall the girl return to the pickling and preserving, the herb-gathering and doctoring, the primitive housewifery and seamstresship of her great-grandmother.”
2. “Shall the Protestant girl borrow a lesson from Catholic humanity, and, while she abjures asceticism, enthusiasm, and unnatural vows, become a deaconess instead of a sister of charity…..”
3. Or, shall she discover her bent like a boy, pursue her profession fearlessly and innocently, achieve independence, and from her own lawful earnings endow and cheer her own dear home.”
Pickles may be in right now and charity is noble, but I am going to have to go with number three!

Girls Had Three Options In the 19th Century

According to The Young Lady’s Guide women had three possible futures:

1.”Shall the girl return to the pickling and preserving, the herb-gathering and doctoring, the primitive housewifery and seamstresship of her great-grandmother.”

2. “Shall the Protestant girl borrow a lesson from Catholic humanity, and, while she abjures asceticism, enthusiasm, and unnatural vows, become a deaconess instead of a sister of charity…..”

3. Or, shall she discover her bent like a boy, pursue her profession fearlessly and innocently, achieve independence, and from her own lawful earnings endow and cheer her own dear home.”

Pickles may be in right now and charity is noble, but I am going to have to go with number three!

Are Gossip Fiends Gaining a New Appreciation for History?

My job requires me to constantly check sites like the Daily Mail, Buzzfeed, The Huffington Post, and other sites that may cover the latest viral video or gossipy news story. Lately, however, I’ve noticed a new trend. These sites are featuring (sometimes prominently) historic materials –– from nostalgic photographs of New York, to archival mugshots of Australian criminals, to a letter from a WWI soldier. Typically, I can expect at least one post or article about a historic document per day on any one of these sites.

But are people drawn to these photographs and stories because they are interested in gaining an appreciation for history or because they are genuinely curious about the past? Looking more closely, the placement of these features seem to reveal what’s going on here. On Buzzfeed, a post showing “historic photographs of ‘white’ slaves” is sandwiched between headlines that read “adult humans plan cabbage patch play-dates” and “high school literacy sign misspelled.” The seriousness of the historic post is therefore called into question before you even click on the link.

The comments on this  Buzzfeed post are even more revealing. One reader notes: “People need to read more history books.” Commenting on one photograph in particular, another writes: “Rebecca is actually Daisy from Downton Abbey.”

On The Daily Mail, a preview for an article about the famous photograph of Abraham Lincoln being “photoshopped” appears next to a picture of a woman clutching a “zonkey” with a caption “Meet Mona Lisa, The Adorable Zonkey.” Both previews take up the same amount of space, both are presented in the same way, and both cover sensationalized stories that pique our curiosity. On the internet, all materials are equal and everything can be taken in in a single glance.

On Tumblr, “Vintage,” “Black and White,” and “History,” are all popular tags (that I exploit). Regardless of the viewer’s reason for clicking on these links, they are clicking them and must be absorbing something, no matter how sensationalized or shocking the archival materials may be. The popularity of The New York Times’ new Tumblr The Lively Morgue is especially encouraging. Despite the fact that some readers miss the point or history of an old photograph or letter, some readers do learn something. As one of the Buzzfeed commentors notes: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” I’m glad some people are getting it.


Show Her It’s A Man’s World
This ad is clearly about more than breakfast in bed.
Yes, man. With these ties, you’ll be able to get her on her knees as you put your hands behind your head and lean back. And thanks to these power-packed patterns, she’ll be happy that it’s a man’s world.

Show Her It’s A Man’s World

This ad is clearly about more than breakfast in bed.

Yes, man. With these ties, you’ll be able to get her on her knees as you put your hands behind your head and lean back. And thanks to these power-packed patterns, she’ll be happy that it’s a man’s world.

Woman – Are You Not Ashamed of Yourself? 
Yeah Woman, don’t you know that he’s the Parson of the Parish?

Woman – Are You Not Ashamed of Yourself?

Yeah Woman, don’t you know that he’s the Parson of the Parish?

Women in Corsets: Women on the Verge of Suffocation

"Adjusto Reducing Corsets were equipped with the famous ‘Reducing Bands,’ which [could] be instantly adjusted."

A noose is also a reducing band that can be instantly adjusted, and it would have been a quicker way to put a 19th century woman out of her misery.

from the New York Public Library Digital Gallery

What People Ate for Breakfast in 1853
I have never been offered pigeon with a side of mush at breakfast before. I wonder if such options are available on Carnival Cruises? 

What People Ate for Breakfast in 1853

I have never been offered pigeon with a side of mush at breakfast before. I wonder if such options are available on Carnival Cruises?
 

Blow In Her Face And She’ll Follow You Anywhere
As if the thought of someone blowing in my face and pointing a phallic cigarette near my throat isn’t bad enough, the ad also violently suggests “hit her with tangy Tipalet cherry.”

Blow In Her Face And She’ll Follow You Anywhere

As if the thought of someone blowing in my face and pointing a phallic cigarette near my throat isn’t bad enough, the ad also violently suggests “hit her with tangy Tipalet cherry.”