December 31, 2015

Vintage Photos of Women Smoking Pipes in the Past

Women with pipes? Why not?

Women pipe smokers are rare today but female smoking was very popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. Respectable women were commonly seen smoking pipes in public. Many famous paintings exist of noble women of the period drinking in the smoke from a clay pipe. The middle classes were eager to enjoy this new pastime as well. In the Elizabethan times clays were quite delicate with graceful thin bowls and long stems. The Dutch redesigned these clays by enlarging the bowl and lengthened the stem.

Dutch, French and English women all enjoyed the "Indian Weed". For centuries the favorite way of enjoying tobacco was to smoke it in clay pipes. As early as about 1575 pipes were being made in England, but by the 17th century Holland had become the dominant center for the manufacture of clay pipes. Clays were made in many other European countries at this time, as well. Such pipes were usually white, with small bowls and long stems. They were extremely fragile and did not last long. However, by the 1850s, when pipe smoking in general became associated with the working class, female smoking began to decline, at least in public. The acceptance of female smokers seemed to vary between regions at this time. It is believed that many women kept their old habits. It is more than likely it was done in secret while they outwardly treated the act as a disgrace.

In rural areas such as the Highlands of Scotland and in Ireland the women smoked without shame. Women in the Hebrides smoked well into the 1930s due to the cultural isolation just as Appalachian women in the US did. It was seen as a very crude and backwards habit by most of polite society but little changes in any society without contact with urban centers. Today a women smoking a pipe draws immediate notice and sometimes ridicule.

Two women with pipes, 1922

Five women smoking pipes and playing cards at table

Founders of a 'Women's Pipe Smokers Club', 15 April 1926

Girl enjoys smoking a pipe

Lady smoking a pipe when playing card

30 Fabulous Black and White Photographs Capture Everyday Life in London in the 1930s

Bill Brandt was a British photographer and photojournalist. Although born in Germany, Brandt moved to London in 1933 and began documenting all levels of British society. This kind of documentary was uncommon at that time.

Lamplighter, Kensington, ca. 1930.

Misty Evening in Sheffield, 1937.

Piccadilly Circus, 1934.

Street scene, 1936.

Sunday Evening, 1936.

December 30, 2015

10 Interesting Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About the Second World War

World War II was the most destructive conflict in history. It cost more money, damaged more property, killed more people, and caused more far-reaching changes than any other war in history. Check out these 10 interesting facts about World War II that you might not know...

1. President Roosevelt used Al Capone’s Limousine

On the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Secret Service realized they did not have a have a bulletproof car to transport President Roosevelt safely to Congress to deliver his Infamy Speech. A quick thinking Secret Service agent realized that the U.S. Treasury had seized the bulletproof limo of Al Capone in 1931.

The car was still in working condition and safely transported the president to Congress. President Roosevelt reportedly quipped, “I hope Mr. Capone won’t mind.”

2. Youngest serviceman in World War II

Calvin Graham was the youngest U.S. serviceman, he lied about his age and enlisted in the Navy at age 12 in 1942, it wasn’t until after he was wounded that his real age was discovered.

3. American radio DJs were prohibited during World War II

In 1942, American radio DJs were prohibited from taking listener requests. The government feared that enemy spies would embed secret messages.

4. The term Third Reich was first used by German author Arthur Moeller van den Bruck in 1923

The term Third Reich was first used by German author Arthur Moeller van den Bruck in his 1923 book Das Dritte Reich (“The Third Reich”). His book heavily influenced the Nazi party.

Moeller van den Bruck wrote that there were two previous Reichs:
- The First Reich was the Holy Roman Empire (962-1806)
- The Second Reich was the German Empire of 1871-1918

5. The SS ran a brothel named “The Kitty Salon”

The SS ran a brothel named “The Kitty Salon,” that was frequented by foreign diplomats. They gathered intelligence by wiretapping it and training the prostitutes on how to get information from clients.

Vintage Photographs Capture People Waiting in Line for 'Star Wars' in the Summer of 1977

In the summer of 1977, as moviegoers caught Star Wars fever for the first time, there were plenty of bell bottoms and zero costumes in the long lines outside theaters. These photos take a look at the culture of "Star Wars" lines from 1977.

People waiting in line for "Star Wars" in the summer of 1977. (AP Photo/Glenn Baglo, Vancouver Sun)

Moviegoers stand in line for an afternoon showing of "Star Wars" in London in December 1977. (AP Photo)

Theater goers wait in lines in front of the Avco Center Theater in Los Angeles to see "Star Wars." June 7, 1977. (AP Photo)

Crowds flocked to see "Star Wars" during its opening weekend in May 1977. This was the scene outside Mann's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. (AP Photo)

Crowds stood in line for hours to see the original "Star Wars" in the summer of 1977. (AP Photo)

December 29, 2015

New Year on the Beach – 12 Interesting Vintage Photos of Women Greeting New Year in Swimsuits in the 1930s

Feminine cotton printed bathing suits often with little over skirts to hide the thighs gradually replaced the ugly 1920s fashion. Drawing of a playsuit for the beach. Fashion and costume history.

The '20s suit which sometimes sported cutout sections in the midriff panel disappeared as it evolved into a two piece garment. By this era most of us would recognize the late 1930s swimsuits as one that bears some relationship to swimwear of today.

Below is a small collection of 12 interesting vintage photos that show women greeting New Year in their 1930s swimsuits.

Girls on the beach in Santa Monica, California in swim suits showing the new year 1931






“Go Over There, By the TV” – 22 Funny Vintage Photographs of People Standing Next to Their Televisions

“Go Over There, By the TV” – The thing your mum asks you to go and stand in front of when she takes your picture. TVs were a prime example when they arrived in many homes in the 1950s, both a source of pride and wonder.

Over the last few decades artist Oliver Wasow has been amassing pictures of people posing with their sets from found photography, creating a haunting collection in which the inanimate objects are the centre of attention rather than the human in shot. Here's some of funny interesting snapshots of people standing next to their televisions.

22 Rare and Stunning Vintage Photos of Black Gentlemen in the Gilded Age Fashions

The Gilded Age in United States history is the late 19th century, from the 1870s to about 1900. The term for this period came into use in the 1920s and 1930s and was derived from writer Mark Twain's 1873 novel The Gilded Age: A Tale of Today, which satirized an era of serious social problems masked by a thin gold gilding.

The early half of the Gilded Age roughly coincided with the middle portion of the Victorian era in Britain and the Belle Époque in France. Its beginning in the years after the American Civil War overlaps the Reconstruction Era (which ended in 1877),. It was followed in the 1890s by the Progressive Era.

Yes, Jim Crow laws were in effect. But there were still plenty of black Americans rockin' those cravats and wide-brimmed hats, too. You just don't see them in most history books.


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