In this section of the site we bring you curated collections of images, books, audio and film, shining a light on curiosities and wonders from a wide range of online archives. With a leaning toward the surprising, the strange, and the beautiful, we hope to provide an ever-growing cabinet of curiosities for the digital age, a kind of hyperlinked Wunderkammer – an archive of materials which truly celebrates the breadth and variety of our shared cultural commons and the minds that have made it. Some of our most popular posts include visions of the future from late 19th century France, a dictionary of Victorian slang and a film showing the very talented “hand-farting” farmer of Michigan. With each post including links back to the original source we encourage you to explore these wonderful online sources for yourself. Check out our Sources page to see where we find the content.
A song naming some of the great silent era actors of the time, the lyrics describing a party where all the actors mingle and dance together, with familiar names such as Charlie Chaplin and Douglas Fairbanks counted among the celebrities. …Continued
During the Pansy Craze of 1930-1933 (mainly in Manhattan), gay clubs and performers, known as “pansy performers”, experienced a huge surge in underground popularity. In 1932, Rae Bourbon was working full-time as a female impersonator at such clubs as Jimmy’s Back Yard in Hollywood and Tait’s in San Francisco. At …Continued
Zélie de Lussan (21 December 1861 – 18 December 1949) was an American opera singer of French descent. This is her singing the oft recorded classic La Paloma, originally composed around 1863 by Spanish composer Sebastián Iradier. Housed at: Internet Archive Underlying Work: PD 70 years | Digital Copy: No …Continued