Heritage, Volume 7, Number 3, Summer 1989 Page: 12
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doves, pigeons, cockatoos and hummingbirds-dead
of course-were dispatched to
London and Paris for the millinery trade.
Nothing was too weird for milady's bonnet!
Women's shoes during the early Victorian
period were generally either flat kid
slippers for indoor wear, or a thin leather
boot with small heels for outdoor pursuits.
High heels became fashionable in the
1870s, and lowered again in the 1880s.
Laced high-heel boots and shoes were the
style of the Roaring Nineties, and evening
slippers sometimes had jeweled toe caps or
clips. Daytime stockings were both colored
and embroidered, while evening stockings
were white. After 1888, all hosiery became
Small fans of ivory or sandalwood were
carried, and silk parasols were favored in
the 1830s and 40s. Coats were very full
capes, as nothing else was big enough to
encase the huge sleeves and cover the
expanse of skirt. Paisley shawls were for
evening wear. Large shawls were folded
over a cord to double at the top, and tied at
the neck with the cord.
During the 1870s, skirts narrowed back
into a high bustle with an apron. The skirt
often had an accordian-pleated back to
allow for the fullness of the bustle, an affair
of stiffened fabric that tied around the
waist and again lower down, with layers of
stiffened ruffles to above the knees in the
back. An apron effect hung down in front
and tied over the bustle in the back. The
trend in the 1880s was the "waterfall back,"
assymetrically draped skirts that covered
underskirts. Poufs that duplicated the look
of bustles were made from the dress material,
without any foundation.
These fashions illustrate the day-to-day
lives of our great-grandmothers. Their
ideas and attitudes, their place in society,
their concept of living is all tied up in the
strings of their corsets and petticoats. In
understanding just a little of these women's
lives, we have a glimpse into an important
part of our own past. This is where we
"came from" and for better or worse, the
mundane matters of corsets and camisoles
have shaped our present world.
Pamela Ashworth Puryear is an eighth generation
Texan from Navasota. She is a historian,
genealogist, former high school English
teacher, and author of Dressing Victorian.
is an authoritative look at the
variations in women's fashions
i from 1837 to 1901. Includes
' instruction for sewing each style.
r The paperback may be ordered -
from the author for $9
cash, check or money order. '
708 Holland Street l '
or send a self-addressed stamped
p envelope for information.
12 HERITAGE * SUMMER 1989
"THIS IS WHAT I
A Boy's Life in Louisiana and Texas 1862-1869
THE REMINISCENCES OF JOHN ALLEN TIPPIT
Edited by Clifton Caldwell
and Mary Crawford
Introduction by George B. Ward
History is made from the stories that men tell. In the winter of 1938, Clifton Caldwell's 75-yearold
grandfather sat down at his typewriter and created a private history filled with honesty,
candor, and colloquial charm. Most of the humorous and poignant stories tell of his remarkable
boyhood during and immediately following the Civil War in Louisiana and Central Texas.
Handsomely printed in two colors by David Holman at Wind River Press in a limited edition of
1,000 copies, of which 700 are for sale. 80 pages, illustrations, cloth and boards. $17.95
State House Press
P.O. Box 15247 * Austin, Texas 78761
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Texas Historical Foundation. Heritage, Volume 7, Number 3, Summer 1989, periodical, Summer 1989; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth45431/m1/12/: accessed November 21, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas Historical Foundation.