Category Archives: 19th Century

A Chilly Night

Snippets 126. In 1815 George Head, the assistant commissary-general of the commissariat of the 3rd division of the Spanish army, undertook a journey across North America, snappily titled Forest Scenes and Incidents in the Wilds of North America, Being a Diary … Continue reading

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The Wonder of Nature

Quick Quotes 12. The following is taken from George Head’s Forest Scenes and Incidents in the Wilds of North America (1829): I descended the bank and crossed the river, entering a little way into the forest. All was silence and … Continue reading

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A Champion Spitter

Quick Quotes 11. The following is taken from George Head’s Forest Scenes and Incidents in the Wilds of North America (1829): It was quite dark when we came to the end of the day’s journey, and I had had nothing … Continue reading

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Contempt for Politicians

Snippets 125. Meeting Presidents became something of a habit for travel writer Max O’Rell. In Jonathan and his Continent (1889), O’Rell describes meeting Stephen Grover Cleveland, the 22nd President in his first of two terms in office. Although it might seem … Continue reading

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The Cross-Dressing Waiter

Snippets 124.  The English Hotel Nuisance by Albert Richard Smith (1855) is one long glorious rant about how annoying it was to stay in a hotel or inn at the time. The following is part of a description of a … Continue reading

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The Sandwich Rip-off

Quick Quotes 7. The following is taken from Albert Smith’s The English Hotel Nuisance (1855): I went one morning, in the autumn of 1850, into a leading hotel at Scarborough with my brother, and we ordered a plate of sandwiches … Continue reading

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Fashionably Late

Snippets 123. One of the earliest references to the concept of being “fashionably late” can be found in an 1843 edition of an Ohio newspaper, which could tend to suggest that the trend originated in America. In Jonathan and his Continent … Continue reading

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