Category Archives: History

The First Private Asylum

Snippets 117. Exactly two hundred years ago today, the first ever private mental health hospital in the USA was opened, in Philadelphia, The Asylum for the Relief of Persons Deprived of the Use of Their Reason. According to Robert Waln, … Continue reading

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Versailles Train Crash

Snippets 116.  Exactly 175 years ago today a tragic rail accident occurred between Versailles and Paris, on 8th May 1842. A locomotive broke an axle and derailed, causing the carriages behind to crash into it and catch fire. Astonishingly, it … Continue reading

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Votes for Women

Snippets 115. In the previous snippet we looked at a quote from Jonathan and His Continent by Max O’Rell. Although he is one of my favourite ‘forgotten’ authors, a travel writer whose books are funny and readable, despite now all … Continue reading

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Annoying Buskers

Pick of Punch 12. This area of the blog offers a selection of entertaining quotes from Punch magazine. The following is from 7th April 1866, and offers a stark illustration of class attitudes in the 19th Century, in particular the … Continue reading

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Marrying for Money

Snippets 114. One of my favourite ‘forgotten’ authors is Max O’Rell, a travel writer whose books are funny and readable, despite now all being well over 100 years old. His 1889 book, Jonathan and his Continent, tackled the subject of … Continue reading

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Shrieking Engines

Pick of Punch 11. This area of the blog offers a selection of interesting quotes from Punch magazine. The following is from 10th March 1866, and is an excerpt from a report on the week in Parliament, concerning the dangers … Continue reading

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Gravity? Hocus-Pocus.

Snippets 113.  In Snippets 21 and 46 we looked at some of William Carpenter’s One Hundred Proofs that the Earth is not a Globe (published 1885). Amusingly, most of his ‘proofs’ can be explained away by Carpenter ignoring two simple … Continue reading

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