Here are pictures and writings from Lady’s Godey’s Book, May 1858 

2. The Princess Royal, Victoria, Queen Victoria’s daughter and first child (May 1858 issue).


Bridesmaid dress worn at the Princess Royal’s wedding (1858 issue).  See link to web article
Royal wedding pictures

On 25 January 1858, a royal wedding took place that was designed to align the fortunes of Europe’s two most important powers, Great Britain and Germany’s chief principality, Prussia. The bride was Victoria, Princess Royal, the oldest child of Queen Victoria and her husband, Prince Albert. She married Prince Frederick of Prussia, later Frederick III, German Emperor and King of Prussia, son of Wilhelm I and Augusta of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, at St. James’s PalaceChapel Royal, St. James’s, London, England (Pictures 1 and 2).

Impact of the invention of the sewing machine
1858 women's fashions
3. 1858 antebellum fashions, three years before the start of the Civil War.

The invention of the sewing machine made antebellum dresses possible (picture 3).
Sewing machines did not go into mass production until the 1850s when Isaac Singer built the first commercially successful machine. Singer built the first sewing machine where the needle moved up and down rather than the side-to-side, and a foot treadle powered the needle. Previous machines were all hand-cranked.

Also included in the magazine 

Children’s clothing
6. A child being dressed as the Queen of May (1858 issue).
4. Infant cloak (issue 1885)
5. Patterns for the infant cloak (issue 1885)


7. Victorian dream house

The infant cloak’s caption states, this cloak should be made of white merino, or cashmere, and the cape trimmed with a fringe and braid; the sleeves should also be finished with a braid (Issue 1885, page 455).  There are no instructions for enlarging the cloak’s patterns, or for sewing the cloak (Issue 1885, page 456).

The best known modern May Day traditions, observed both in Europe and North America, include dancing around the maypole and crowning the Queen of May (picture 6).

Architectural Drawings

Also included are plans for a country home. The house has two floors. The first floor has a bedroom, sitting room, pantry, dining room, hall and parlor, plus a verandah (their spelling) and a porch.  The second floor has a study; one bathroom and four bedrooms, three of which have closets. There is one stairwell in the house.

8. Recipes for cookies and icing

Here are two recipes, one for cookies, the other for icing. These recipes were written before Fannie Farmer declared that all measurements were level, so one cannot be sure whether a teaspoon is level, full, or heaping. No temperature is given, but this was before the invention of the electric stove and everyone cooked, so probably the instructions are adequate (8).

Cookies: — 3/4 of a pound of butter, one pound of sugar, three eggs, one teacup of sour milk, one teaspoon of soda, and two teaspoons full of rose-water or almond.
Cream the butter and sugar; add eggs and milk, flour enough to cut in rounds.

Icing for Cake: — One cup of white sugar, One egg. Pour on to the sugar water enough to dissolve it, set it on the fire and let it boil until it will hair, beat the white of one egg to a stiff froth, pour the heated sugar to it and stir briskly until cool enough to stay on the cake. The icing should not be applied till the cake is quite cold. This will frost two common sized loaves.
215 884 7065
© Laurel Hoffmann, 2019.


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