Category Archives: 1910s

Ida B. Wells–A Giant among Women

Here is a short list of Ida B. Wells’s accomplishments: school teacher, journalist, newspaper owner, anti-lynching crusader, mother of four, civil rights leader, and black women’s suffrage advocate.  She filled her life (1862-1931) with more achievements than tens of other … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s, 1910s, 1920s, General | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Polka Dots or Stripes?

Let me make a confession—I don’t like polka dots.  Delving into fashion history has made me realize that I have very strong opinions about textile patterns in general.  From the outset I knew I didn’t like flowered patterns. Geometric designs … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s, 1910s | Tagged | 4 Comments

A Summer Idyll, ca. 1909

This beautiful photo, an eBay find, is the front of a postcard. A little research revealed that it is what is called a “real photo postcard.” Although such cards had long been in use, the Kodak company developed special paper … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s, 1910s | Tagged | 2 Comments

The Neighbors at Mission Court, 1919

Are you wearing your mask?  These residents of Mission Court in Pasadena California are all abiding by the rules.  As luck would have it, I found a Wikipedia entry for the small apartment complex, which is now on the National … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s, General | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Looking Back to the Flu Epidemic, 1918

Apparently not everyone was on lockdown during the influenza epidemic of 1918.  I found these images on one of my favorite website, the Digital Public Library of America. All kinds of institutions collected photos of the epidemic. The three I’ve … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Women and War Bonds, 1917

When women are depicted in political posters, they are most often young and appealing or heavily idealized, like Liberty herself.  I’ve looked at a lot of war posters in my day—they are a convenient teaching tool—and the older woman in … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

A Skirt with Fur Trim, mid 1910s

Here’s an elegant update to a classic style. This older woman wears all the components of the classic shirtwaist look–a white blouse and a dark skirt–that had been an American fashion standard for years. However, the fur trim added to … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Harriet Strong, the Pampas Woman

When you drive around Southern California, you often see big stands of pampas grass, the tall billowing plant in the background of the photo above. It grows like a weed. Native to South America, the plant was brought here in … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s, 1910s, 1920s, General, Pre 1900 | Leave a comment

Fourth of July in Syracuse, 1918

World War One ended in 1918, but not until mid November—the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.  When this Fourth of July picture was taken in Syracuse, New York, no one knew that the end was … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , | 1 Comment

A Uniform for the Old–A Lace Collar on a Black Dress

Last week’s photo reminded me that the black dress with a lace collar served as a kind of uniform for the old in the first half of the twentieth century.  The outfit combines two elements deemed necessary in any older … Continue reading

Posted in 1900s, 1910s, 1920s, 1930s, 1940s | Tagged , | 4 Comments