Category Archives: Snippets

No Change for a Greenback

Snippets 197. John Muir (1838-1914) was a celebrated naturalist known as “John of the Mountains”, a key figure in the push for the establishment of National Parks in the USA. The following quote is taken from his account of A Thousand … Continue reading

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Missing Mail in 1862

Snippets 196.  In the mid 19th Century the postal service in Britain was not exactly in its infancy, but was certainly undergoing a rapid programme of modernisation.  The Penny Black was introduced in 1840 and the first post boxes started … Continue reading

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The Looby with a Malmsey Nose

Snippets 195.  Francis Grose (1731-1791) was a noted antiquarian who wrote a series of books about medieval antiquities. Financial difficulties inspired him to branch out into other areas of writing, and in 1785 his A Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar … Continue reading

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Hot Air Balloon Crash

Snippets 194. The Crystal Palace was a famous London landmark, built for the Great Exhibition of 1851.  After the Exhibition it was relocated from Hyde Park to Penge Common, where it stood until it was destroyed by fire in 1936.  … Continue reading

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The Early Cinema Queuing Nuisance

Snippets 193.  Looking at old newspaper articles, one thing that is often quite striking is how much resistance can be found to an idea that we now consider commonplace, but was unusual at the time.  One such example comes from … Continue reading

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Watch out for Lizards!

Snippets 192.  In 1900 American writer Laura G Collins published a collection of letters from her various travels around Europe, titled By-gone Tourist Days: Letters of Travel.  Although many of them are relatively dry descriptions of tourist destinations, at times she … Continue reading

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A pony, or some bricks for a church?

Snippets 191.  The following quote is taken from Notes of a Nomad, by Canadian author Lady Harriet Julia Jephson, published just over a hundred years ago in 1918.  For the most part it is a journal of her travels, but it … Continue reading

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