Tag Archives: Godey’s Lady’s Book
new-women-og

The New Woman, Athletically Considered (1896)

This extensively illustrated article by W. Bengough appeared in the January 1896 issue of Godey’s Lady’s Book.

The New Woman, Athletically Considered by W. Bengough

Our attention has been called to the “new woman” so frequently of late, and in such indefinite terms, that it is of some interest to inquire whence she came and whither she is going.

We are inclined to suspect that the professional paragrapher, ever upon the alert for some new thing, is to a great extent responsible for the prominent place which she has taken in public attention. He was her discoverer and christener, and in the capacity of advance agent he has created public interest and curiosity, and, without doubt, has made such a fad of her newness that the genuine “new woman” is in danger of being lost amid a myriad of shallow imitators.

Let us not be deceived. The “new woman,” as I mean the term, is not a temporary fad, but, on the contrary, the inevitable product of evolution. She has been slowly developed from carefully scattered seed, which, fifty years ago, amid the jeers and mud-throwing of scandalized conservatism, a small band of determined “new” women started out to plant, making the first efforts to obtain some recognition of the then scouted idea that women were men’s intellectual equals if only given an equal chance. These were the property called “strong-minded” women of our fathers, and results have proved that the name was well chosen, but it has become an honored title instead of a contemptuous one, as originally intended.

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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Dr. Gregory on Medical Instruction for Women (1860)

(Godey’s Lady’s Book, May, 1860) At a public meeting lately held in this College, Dr. S. Gregory, the indefatigable friend and promoter of the movement to give medical instruction to women, made some statements that show the steady progress of this good cause.

“He remarked that one of the results of the discussion and prosecution of the cause of female medical education during the past twelve years had been, as was intended and expected, a gradual transfer of the practice of midwifery from the hands of men to those of women.”::godey:: (more…)


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Christmas in Germany and New Year’s Day in France (1848)

This piece by Francis J. Grund appeared in the January 1848 issue of Godey’s Lady’s Book published in Philadelphia.

There is nothing so beautiful in this world of bright hopes and sad realities, as superstition. It is the vein of poetry, which runs unheeded and often unperceived through our lives, and tinges our earthly existence with hues of the unknown future. It is the dream of the heart in the midst of our presumptuous pursuits of knowledge— the magnetism of the mind, which deflects it continually from science to faith, from arrogant self-sufficiency toward the dusky regions of the unseen powers.

Nothing is more absurd than the pride of those who pretend to be above superstition. They are, for the most part, believers in fate, in accidents, in destiny, and in a thousand things which science would equally condemn, though it cannot account for their cause, however it may attempt to disprove them. We may make light of the belief in supernatural things; yet how much of nature do we see, and what little of it do we know? Can we account for a single phenomenon in nature, except by an hypothesis? Do we comprehend a single property of matter, except by inference from its laws, as far as these fall within the short compass of our experience? And what do we know about ourselves? Are not our births and deaths the eternal secrets of nature, and is not our whole life an enigma, solved only beyond the grave? Let us analyze our pains and pleasures, our hopes and fears, and they exist for the greater part only in the imagination— the most god-like quality of man— unbounded by the mathematical rules of time and space; confounding the present by the memory of the past, and configurating the future beyond the spheres. And what is superstition but the instantaneous action of the mind, or the imagination, without going through the tedium of logical deduction, and the slow and uncertain action of judgment? It is the harmonious sound of the AElolian harp touched by a simple whisper of the breeze, and yet far more accurate and true than when tortured by the artistical performer.

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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The Colored Woman of Today - 1897

The Colored Woman of Today: Some Notable Types (1897)

By Fannie Barrier Williams

There is something very interesting and wonderfully hopeful in the development of the woman side of the colored race in this country, yet no women amongst us are so little known as the thousands of bright, alert, cultured, and gracious colored women of to-day.

Mrs. Fannie Barrier Williams.

Mrs. Fannie Barrier Williams.

A little over a century ago colored women had no social status, and indeed only thirty years ago the term “womanhood” was not large enough in this Christian republic to include any woman of African descent. No one knew her, no one was interested in her. Her birthright was supposed to be all the social evils that had been the dismal heritage of her race for two centuries. This is still the popular verdict to an astounding degree in all parts of our country. A national habit is not easily cured, and the habit of the American people, who indiscriminately place all colored women on the lowest social levels in this country, has tended to obscure from view and popular favor some of the most interesting women in the land.

Mrs. Josephine Bartlett, Chicago.

Mrs. Josephine Bartlett, Chicago.

But in spite of these prejudicial hindrances and a lack of confidence the young colored women of this generation are emerging from obscurity in many interesting ways that will happily surprise those who have never known them by their womanly qualities and graceful accomplishments. Such women seem to have no relationship to the slavery conditions of the yesterday of history. In a surprisingly brief period of time they have been completely lifted out of the past by the Americanism which transforms and moulds into higher forms all who come under the spell of American free institutions.

It should also be noted that the thousands of cultured and delightfully useful women of the colored race who are worth knowing and who are prepared to co-operate with white women in all good efforts, are simply up-to-date new women in the best sense of that much-abused term. If there be one virtue that is conspicuous in the characters of these women it is the passion to be useful and active in everything that befits high-minded and cultivated women.

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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Woman in Japan OG

Woman In Japan – Godey’s Lady’s Book (1886)

This profile on the women of Japan appeared in the March 1886 issue of Godey’s Lady’s Book.

By Helen H.S. Thompson

There are two distinct types of physiognomy strongly indicated among the Japanese women. The higher classes possess clearly cut features, on fine, long, oval faces, deep sunken eye sockets, oblique eyes, with long, drooping lids, and high arched eyebrows, lofty, narrow forehead, small red lips, pointed chin, and very small hands and feet.

Among the agricultural and laboring class, are seen the round flattened face, level eyes and expanded nose. The grotesque pictures of Japanese life familiar to all, are usually drawn from this class. The ladies of Japan are noticeable for taste in dress, and when occasion requires are attired in elegant and splendid costumes. The grace and richness of the attire worn by the women of rank and wealth is a frequent surprise to the traveler. In our travel through the empire we were not infrequently guests in an ex- damio’s home, and among the samarai class, where we beheld long, trailing robes of exquisitely embroidered silks, chiefly of white, crimson or ashen hues, open bodice crossed and filled in with soft, rich laces, that would delight a connoisseur; luxuriant hair flowing over the shoulders, or bound in one beautiful tress, or formed into an elegant and indescribable coiffure upon the head, each indicating age and condition, whether maiden, wife or widow, with picturesque fan, flowing, open sleeve, punctilious etiquette and charming manners.

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.

(more…)


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