While beards may be coming back into style for men, women are still expected to keep the majority of their body hairless. This tradition of smooth, hairless ladies goes way, way back. Even in some of the earliest paintings of nude females, the women have very little body hair. But Renaissance women didn’t have Nair or disposable razors. Did they really keep their bodies hairless? And if so, how?
According to Jill Burke, a lecturer on Italian renaissance history at the University of Edinburgh, women dealt with removing their hair in all sorts of ways, and most of them sounds pretty terrible. Take this 1532 recipe:
Boil together a solution of one pint of arsenic and eighth of a pint of quicklime. Go to a baths or a hot room and smear medicine over the area to be depilated. When the skin feels hot, wash quickly with hot water so the flesh doesn’t come off.
Florence Nightingale was much more than just ‘that Crimean nurse with the lamp’
What I learned is that after the Crimean War from 1853 to 1856, in which thousands of British soldiers died from infections, Nightingale visited almost every hospital in Europe, analyzed them and then wrote up her findings in “Notes on Hospitals,” which became the guide to hospital architecture for the next century.Florence Nightingale Credit Associated Press
Its first sentences changed my idea of Florence Nightingale forever: “It may seem a strange principle to enunciate as the very first requirement in a hospital that it should do the sick no harm. It is quite necessary, nevertheless, to lay down such a principle.”
They fought it out for 15 years. She turned down every suitor; she took every opportunity for training as a nurse, and eventually she won. Her father granted her an annuity, and she took over a hospital on Harley Street where she put her ideas into practice.
some more interesting tidbits about Florence:
Although much of Nightingale’s work improved the lot of women everywhere, Nightingale was of the opinion that women craved sympathy and were not as capable as men. She criticized early women’s rights activists for decrying an alleged lack of careers for women at the same time that lucrative medical positions, under the supervision of Nightingale and others, went perpetually unfilled.
She preferred the friendship of powerful men, insisting they had done more than women to help her attain her goals, writing, “I have never found one woman who has altered her life by one iota for me or my opinions.”She often referred to herself in the masculine, as for example “a man of action” and “a man of business”.
She did, however, have several important and long-lasting friendships with women. Later in life she kept up a prolonged correspondence with Irish nun Sister Mary Clare Moore, with whom she had worked in Crimea. Her most beloved confidante was Mary Clarke, an Englishwoman she met in 1837 and kept in touch with throughout her life.
A story that describes a gold heist from the San Francisco Mint at the turn of the century could explain the source of the gold coins worth $10 million that were found last month in California’s Mother Lode country.
The published news item was discovered in the Haithi Trust Digital Library and was provided by Northern California fishing guide Jack Trout, who doubles as a historian and collector of rare coins.
In a story that went global last week, a couple in California’s Sierra Nevada foothills found six buried steel cans that contained 1,427 gold coins dated 1847 to 1894 and worth $10 million. They were walking their dog on their property when they sighted a piece of a rusty steel can that was slightly exposed from surface erosion around it. Inside the can they saw the first glimpse of gold coins.
The value of the coins was enhanced, according to a broker, because they are mostly uncirculated, mint condition. The face value of the coins adds up to $27,000. Those two facts are a match of the gold heist in 1900 from the San Francisco Mint.
In addition, the coins were largely in chronological order, which indicates they were unused. (There are some problems with this theory, though, according to The Chronicle’s Kevin Fagan in an article summarizing the various hypotheses).
New information, which adds credibility that the heist was an inside job at the Mint, became available late Monday afternoon from research by historian Jack Trout: An 1866 Liberty $20 gold piece — which did not include the words “In God We Trust” — was part of the haul, a coin that alone is worth more than $1 million.
Those Virginia families found the old, handwritten papers in attics, basements or desk drawers, Levengood said. The society stores the documents in an archive spanning thousands of square feet, he said.
The antique papers turned out to mention slaves.
“Often they appeared in the records of the owners who owned slaves as human property, which to us sounds so obscene and alien,” said Levengood, who’s also a historian. “But these people were writing down their inventory as if you would for insurance purposes. That’s the kind of things that owners did with slaves. This was the most valuable property they owned, and they wanted to make sure it was recorded.
“Often there was a human connection, and they grew up with these people, and they recorded their birth dates and deaths. It’s an incredibly complicated and tragic institution that we’re just beginning to understand the dimensions of,” Levengood said.
Presidential Proclamation — Women’s History Month, 2014
BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Throughout our Nation’s history, American women have led movements for social and economic justice, made groundbreaking scientific discoveries, enriched our culture with stunning works of art and literature, and charted bold directions in our foreign policy. They have served our country with valor, from the battlefields of the Revolutionary War to the deserts of Iraq and mountains of Afghanistan. During Women’s History Month, we recognize the victories, struggles, and stories of the women who have made our country what it is today.
This month, we are reminded that even in America, freedom and justice have never come easily. As part of a centuries-old and ever-evolving movement, countless women have put their shoulder to the wheel of progress — activists who gathered at Seneca Falls and gave expression to a righteous cause; trailblazers who defied convention and shattered glass ceilings; millions who claimed control of their own bodies, voices, and lives. Together, they have pushed our Nation toward equality, liberation, and acceptance of women’s right — not only to choose their own destinies — but also to shape the futures of peoples and nations.
Through the grit and sacrifice of generations, American women and girls have gained greater opportunities and more representation than ever before. Yet they continue to face workplace discrimination, a higher risk of sexual assault, and an earnings gap that will cost the average woman hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of her working lifetime.
As women fight for their seats at the head of the table, my Administration offers our unwavering support. The first bill I signed as President was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which made it easier for women to challenge pay discrimination. Under the Affordable Care Act, we banned insurance companies from charging women more because of their gender, and we continue to defend this law against those who would let women’s bosses influence their health care decisions. Last year, recognizing a storied history of patriotic and courageous service in our Armed Forces, the United States military opened ground combat units to women in uniform. We are also encouraging more girls to explore their passions for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and taking action to create economic opportunities for women across the globe. Last fall, we finalized a rule to extend overtime and minimum wage protections to homecare workers, 90 percent of whom are women. And this January, I launched a White House task force to protect students from sexual assault.
As we honor the many women who have shaped our history, let us also celebrate those who make progress in our time. Let us remember that when women succeed, America succeeds. And from Wall Street to Main Street, in the White House and on Capitol Hill — let us put our Nation on the path to success.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim March 2014 as Women’s History Month. I call upon all Americans to observe this month and to celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8, 2014, with appropriate programs, ceremonies, and activities. I also invite all Americans to visit WomensHistoryMonth.gov to learn more about the generations of women who have left enduring imprints on our history.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of March, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-eighth.
Considering that these coins had probably been buried for more than a century, we dug through microfiche files from old California newspapers, ones that were in print in the 19th century, like the San Jose Mercury News. Luckily, Google has been digitizing a tremendous amount of dead-tree media, including out-of-print books, magazines and newspapers.
A search on Books.google.com for “stole,” “1000,” “gold,” “coins,” “from” “San Francisco.” brings up a curious note from an the Bulletin of The American Iron and Steel Association, an industry newsletter published every two weeks by an organization now known as the American Iron and Steel Institute.
Tucked into the Aug. 10, 1901 issue, between political and financial notes and the latest obituaries was this little tidbit:
“The sum of $30,000 in gold coin has recently been stolen from the vault of the cashier of the San Francisco Mint. No trace has been found of the missing gold.”
….Gilbert confirmed that the Bulletin was from the AISI (then known as the American Iron and Steel Institute). “At the top of the document it lists the leadership staff of institute at that time. I was able to verify that it was us.” She told Mashable that the staff at the AISI was “pretty amused” by the discovery and thought she might spend some time perusing the century-old newsletters.
read more @ mashable
This article from The Wall Street Journal’s Washington Wire column is an interesting one. A review was conducted and found that prejudice played a part in some heroes not getting their awards. Barak Obama will be awarding these individuals their medals. Please read the Washington Wire column:blogs.wsj.com
Ronald McNair grew up in Lake City, SC. He grew up to become an astronaut. Tragically, he was on the Challenger mission, which exploded seconds after takeoff on January 28, 1986. This is the actually funny story of how he started his journey, in a time of great racial strife, as told by his brother to StoryCorps. And despite the tragedy, there’s a little bit of a happy ending.
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There’s a sort of double standard, especially if you think about the idea of what was considered “being a lady” at the time. Now you have to be able to fight off a man—even though normally society thought you should be dainty.
Even if it was an upper-class white woman, who was more likely to believed, sometimes judges would dismiss it because they would feel, “Oh, [if she were really a lady] she would have been too ashamed to actually come forward.” So everything was stacked against the woman.
That’s the other thing: both the North and the South rarely thought it was rape when it was a black woman. It wasn’t until the Civil War when black women were actually able to come forward and call it rape. Before that time, even in the North, they would make it a lesser charge [for black women], if at all. I do have at least one record where a black woman was able to testify about a sexual assault in New York or someplace like that, but that was very rare. For the most part, black women’s voices went unheard.