Tag Archives: Godey’s

The Shepherd’s Dog

Without the shepherd’s dog the whole of the mountainous land in Scotland would not be worth sixpence. It would require more hands to manage a flock of sheep than the profits of the whole stock would be capable of maintaining.

Well may the shepherd, then, feel an interest in his dog.

It is, indeed, he that earns the family bread, of which he is content himself with the smallest morsel. Neither hunger nor fatigue will drive him from his master’s side; he will follow him through fire and water. Another thing very remarkable is the understanding these creatures have of the necessity of being particularly tender over lame or sickly sheep. They will drive these a great deal more gently than others, and sometimes a single one is committed to their care to take home. On these occasions they perform their duty like the most tender nurses.

Can it be wondered at, then, that the colley (collie) should be so much prized by the shepherd; that his death should be regarded as a great calamity to a family, of which he forms, to all intents and purposes, an integral part; or that his exploits of sagacity should be handed down from generation to generation?

Source: Godey’s Lady’s Book, August 1864

Godey’s Lady’s Book— Louis Antoine Godey began publishing Godey’s Lady’s Book in 1830. He designed his monthly magazine specifically to attract the growing audience of literate American women. The magazine was intended to entertain, inform, and educate the women of America.

Image: Illustration by Arthur Wardle, for A history and description of the collie or sheep dog in his British varieties (1890)

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A Mother’s Love (Godey’s Lady’s Book, 1837)

The sacred fount from whence the pure affections flow
First into life, and smoothly calm
The boisterous waves of care,
Springs from a Mother’s breast.
There, in its bright effulgent glow
Is in union sweet with nature,
The immortal passion – love;
Which, once it sways the human heart
Is like to the vari-colored bow in Heaven placed to prove
That no more will wrath o’erflow
But gentle Peace shall reign.

A mother’s love! the bird its young protects
Whilst nest’ling ‘neath her wings, and from
The death-stroke of brutish man
Would shield her tender brood, and
Shew her own frail form (so beautiful – so fair)
To the dread marksman’s aim!
Can’st say that Mother’s love is pric’d?
Can’st say ye might knit the love of millions
And yet would equal one Mother’s?

By S. F. Glenn, Washington City, October 1837.

Godey’s Lady’s Book— Louis Antoine Godey began publishing Godey’s Lady’s Book in 1830. He designed his monthly magazine specifically to attract the growing audience of literate American women. The magazine was intended to entertain, inform, and educate the women of America.
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Blackwell's Island Lunatic Asylum

Nellie Bly – Among the Mad

Nellie Bly was born Elizabeth Jane Cochran in “Cochran Mills”, today part of the Pittsburgh suburb of Burrell Township, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania on May 5, 1864. In 1880, Cochrane and her family moved to Pittsburgh. An aggressively misogynistic column titled “What Girls Are Good For” in the Pittsburgh Dispatch prompted her to write a fiery rebuttal to the editor under the pseudonym “Lonely Orphan Girl”. The editor, impressed with her passion, and ran an advertisement asking the author to identify herself. When Cochrane introduced herself to the editor, he offered her the opportunity to write another piece for the newspaper, again under the pseudonym “Lonely Orphan Girl”.

After her first article for the Dispatch, titled “The Girl Puzzle”, ran, the paper offered her a full-time job. Many woman newspaper writers at that time used pen names, and for Cochrane her editor chose “Nellie Bly”, adopted from the title character in the popular song “Nelly Bly” by Stephen Foster. The pseudonym was intended to be “Nelly Bly,” but her editor wrote “Nellie” by mistake, and the error stuck.

In honor of her 150th birthday, here is the complete text her first Godey’s article, Among the Mad, in on which she tell’s Godey’s Lady’s book readers about how she got started in New York journalistic circles and the events that led to her first standout article, Ten Days in a Mad-House.

Among the Mad

Become insane? and through my own desire be confined as a lunatic in a madhouse; bring upon myself all the mental torture of being day and night with those staring, senseless creatures, whose proximity alone fills our souls with sickening horror?

And to what end? In order to make for myself a position whereby I could earn a livelihood.

A few months previous I had come to New York a stranger. I had never been in the city before, and had not one acquaintance among its million and more inhabitants.

“We have more women now than we want,” was the invariable reply of the editors to my plea for work, while some added, “Women are no good, anyway.”

At last my purse, containing all my money, was stolen from me, and I was penniless. I was too proud to return to the position I had left in search of new worlds to conquer. Indeed, I cannot say the thought ever presented itself to me, for I never in my life turned back from a course I had started upon. I borrowed ten cents from my landlady for car-fare, and in my desperation sought out Col. Cockerill, managing editor of the New York WORLD. I had to do a great deal of talking before I was allowed to enter the elevator which carries visitors to the sacred precincts of the editor’s sanctum.

An editor is always a hard-worked man, and if he saw every person who called with some crank notion, his life, which now lasts but half the allotted time, would reach but a quarter, and the newspaper would never be issued. I really think at last I gained admission by saying that I had an important subject to propose, and if the editor-in-chief could not see me, I would go to some other paper. I always say energy rightly applied and directed will accomplish anything. I accomplished my purpose.

Without wasting any time, I laid before Col. Cockerill some plans for newspaper work, as desperate as they were startling for a girl to attempt to carry out. He gave me twenty-five dollars to retain my services while he would think over my suggestions. When the time expired, I called for his decision.

“Do you think you can work your way into an insane asylum?” he asked.


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Ruby’s “Easter Hat” – April 1883

For much of the 19th century Godey’s Lady’s Book’s editors used the magazine to showcase the literary work of American authors. This short story,  Ruby’s “Easter Hat”, appeared in the April 1883 issue.

Ruby’s “Easter Hat”

“I wish I was dead, so there;” and Ruby Brown stood the picture of lovely despair, gazing down at a yellow mass at her feet, consisting of six dozen crushed eggs. Poor Ruby had been a whole month saving and hoarding these treasures which were to play an important part in the purchase of a lovely “Easter bonnit,” Aunt Rushy had contemptuously called it, when Ruby had said in a pleading tone:

“But auntie, all the girls are going to have pretty new hats to wear Easter Sunday.”

“Easter bonnits, indeed,” snapped Aunt Rushy, “better be thinkin’ of the good Lord, and how he riz on that day, then hey their minds on bonnits.”

“But auntie—”

“Now, no buts, Ruby Brown; girls in my time wusn’t thinkin’ eternally ’bout bonnits and gimcracks; and Easter Sunday wasn’t made a show day for bonnits, either.”

“If I could have the eggs, auntie,” pleaded Ruby, ignoring her last remarks.

“Well, take ‘em; I don’t, know as I care, if you can save enuff ‘tween this and then. You’ll hey to hey a bonnit eny how shortly after Easter.”

Ruby ran joyfully out into the coop to gather the first installment, after giving Aunt Rushy an affectionate little hug.


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Good Style, Godey's Lady's Book

Good Style in Godey’s Lady’s Book, April 1895

A girl sees a pretty fashion plate, she has it copied by a good dressmaker. The dress is put on, it is good and expensive, but where is the style? It is not there. The wearer is young, she has a pretty face; what is it that makes her look ordinary, commonplace?

She stoops.

Another girl has an inexpensive dress, she has such a look of thoroughbred that if she speaks, people listen; at each turn of her head one sees a new beauty in her face. Wherever she moves our eyes follow her; what is it which makes all she wears look well?

It is the true dignity and ease of her carriage.

Without a good carriage a pretty face is thrown away, the most perfect dress-cutting and fitting are thrown away, even refinement of manner is hidden under a bushel. To carry herself well is almost the only personal distinction left to a woman; it positively alters her features.

With the head erect, the chest expanded, and the back teeth slightly set together (keeping the mouth open often accompanies stooping), the chin gains decision,the upper lip shortens, and really the nose straightens.

The pleased feeling of not being at a disadvantage with the world gives a look of pleasure to the eyes, dresses when made and worn do look like the stylish fashion-plate from which they are copied, and life is a sweet success.

Godey’s Lady’s Book— Louis Antoine Godey began publishing Godey’s Lady’s Book in 1830. He designed his monthly magazine specifically to attract the growing audience of literate American women. The magazine was intended to entertain, inform, and educate the women of America.

Collection:  Godey’s Lady’s Book
Publication: Godey’s Lady’s Book
Date: April, 1895
Title: Good Style
Location: Philadelphia, PA

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