Monday, August 27, 2012

Godey's Lady's Book

The Godey's Lady's Book was a monthly magazine published in Philadelphia between 1830 and 1878.  Before the American Civil War it was the most widely circulated magazine in the United States.  The editor from 1837 to 1877 was Sarah Josepha Hale.  She also wrote "Mary Had a Little Lamb".
Godey's Lady's Book was best known for the fashion plates and patterns which became a useful source for women across the continent.  The magazine also published short stories, information about women's causes and employment, and sheet music; it never discussed political subjects.

So, I thought I would see if any Godey's Lady's Books were still in existence.  I found one on eBay from 1853 but the seller wouldn't ship overseas.  I can get a download on my Kindle... but I don't own a Kindle.  Then I just Googled 'Godey's Lady's Book' and found that there are free digitised copies for study purposes everywhere.  I started at , but there at other sites as well.

The plate above is titled 'Taking Tea in the Arbor'  from January-June 1852 collection.  Mary Criswell was engaged in March 1852.  I wonder if she and her sisters and her mother studied this very picture to get ideas for her wedding dress?

Isn't the internet amazing?!

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