Tag Archives: London history

Good doctoring from 1808

A tale of an eminently practical solution to psychosomatic mental illness from August 1808. They did not call it the Age of Enlightenment for nothing…     Advertisements

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This time it’s the gabby cabby

By coincidence another cab-related case from 1862 that I just had to share. This time it seems as if the boot is on the other foot. There is more than a hint of irony that after driving like a crazy … Continue reading

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It’s the rich wot gets the pleasure

And the poor knew their place. This is the story from the Bow St Magistrate’s Court in 1862. It’s the tale of a cheapo toff who was embarrassed when a short-changed cabby chased him and shouted at him in the … Continue reading

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Telephone’s early adopters

An aside into Victorian business life is the fact that when a London solicitors sent a letter on April 27 1885, its headed paper quoted the firm’s telephone number. The number was 1095 and there genuinely were another 1094 phones … Continue reading

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Old Slaughter’s Coffee House; ‘Now among the things that were…’

  Thursday March 30 1843 saw the auctioning off of a London landmark just for its building materials. The wildly misnamed and deeply corrupt government department, the Commissioners of Woods and Forests, had bought the site at number 74 St … Continue reading

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Just a graze…

Once upon a time the uncertainty and certainty of death hung over everybody, everywhere, all the time, as this brief report from the London Evening Standard in 1840 shows…

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Elegant shopping at Derry and Toms

Great graphic commercial art from the 1920s in this piece from Dave Walker about the department store in Kensington, now long gone… Victoria Station, at a quiet time of the day. Sometime…in the 1920s, I think. A display unit, and … Continue reading

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The worst slum in London

In Victorian London most of the poor lived in what would be called slum housing. During the 18th century many ramshackle ‘courts’ had been built as a result of speculative infilling behind street frontages. However, the reputation of one court stands out. For … Continue reading

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E Pur si Muove

There is something disarmingly strengthening when you hear that innocent piping voice of history whispering from the unencumbered past, ‘excuse me, but I think you are perhaps mistaken…” I am not a climatologist, but… I am certain that the congregation … Continue reading

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The rules of the road in the 19th century

It’s been the equivalent to an earworm. It has been driving me a bit crazy after I read on another great history site that there were no traffic rules in 19th century London. The estimable site is Two Nerdy History … Continue reading

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