Afternoon Dress Ca. 1866.
Afternoon Dress Ca. 1866.
Alfred Stevens (1823-1906)
“Elegant Figures in a Salon”
Oil on canvas
Located in the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas, United States
Elizabeth Jane Cochran
(May 5, 1864 - January 27, 1922)
Known as ‘Nellie Bly’ was a 23 year old Journalist without a job when she walked into the office of Joseph Pulitzers in 1887’ and was given a daunting assignment- to expose the horrors of the Blackwells Island Insane Asylum. Joseph did not give her a concrete plan on how he was going to get her out, but he promised her that he would achieve this somehow. This was by far her biggest and scariest assignment yet- She rehearsed religiously- she played mad, undoubtedly demented and referred to a ‘hopeless case’ by the Doctors who admitted her. She was in fact such a good actress that the Doctors diagnosed her as critically insane. Once she got to the ‘Mad House’ she dropped her act and no one seemed to notice. As she stated, “The more sanely I talked and acted, the crazier I was thought to be.” She witnessed and dealt with the horrible conditions first hand. She was forced to take ice baths, freezing nights, both psychical and mental abuse, as well as dirty place she was forced to sleep. The doors were individually locked and the windows were chained. There was no plan in case of a fire. “What, expecting torture, would produce insanity quicker then this treatment? Take a perfectly sane, healthy woman, shut her up and make her sit from 6am to 8pm on straight back benches, do not allow her to talk, nor move during these hours. Give her no reading and let her know nothing of the world or it’s doing. Give her bad food and harsh treatment- and see how long it will take to make her insane. Two months, and this would make her a physical and mental wreck.” Nellie Blys assignment came to an end, spending one week in the ‘Mad House’ when she was finally rescued by Joseph.
The Doctors and nurses were full of excuses. Blys story forced many changes to be made. In addition, just under $1 Million (25 million today) was appropriated to the Department of Public Charities and Corrections. Allowing for a better, safer place to help individuals who were mentally ill.
“Ever since Miss. Brown had been taken away everything is different. The nurses are very kind, and given plenty to wear. The Doctors come to see us often and the food has improved greatly.” - A women Bly had befriended during her stay.
Journal Des Demoiselles ca.1874
@thehoopskirtsociety on Instagram.
Charles Frederick Worth
Countess Élisabeth Greffulhe
Dress: Charles Frederick Worth
Photographer: Paul Nadar
Cream silk waistcoat with colored silk embroidery, 1850s
Edgar Allan Poe, Great poem
Details - National Gallery London
I feel like in history we need to talk more about the lesser known but incredibly weird moments. Like the guy who gave president Andrew Jackson a gigantic block of cheese
West Point cadet, mid 1800s. via internet search.
Arts & Crafts was also an architectural movement!
If people from the 1800s traveled to the future they’d probably want to kill us all for showing so much skin.
Characters from my story Rush!
The thief and the cryptid
Evening dress. c. 1865..