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Fashion History - 19th Century

History of nineteenth century women's fashions, and how fashions have influenced the lives of women in the 19th century including the Victorian period. Historical costumes, essays and more.
  1. Godey's Lady's Book
  2. Women's Fashion

African American Women - About 1900
African American women in photographs, about 1899-1900, from an album of photographs collected and compiled by W.E.B. Du Bois.

Godey's Lady's Book - Women's Fashions, 1860s Style
Selections of 1860s women's fashions from Godey's Lady's Book, the most popular pre-Civil War women's magazine in America. The hand-colored fashion plates were enormously popular.

Women and Bicycles - Fashion for the Active Woman, 1894 Style
Fashion, exercise and health come together as women adapt to the new contraption, the bicycle.

History of Costume
Many of the color plates reproduced here (from a book published mid-19th century) are of women. This page includes the 16th-17th centuries.

Regency Fashion Images
A large collection of images from late 18th century through early 19th century women's fashions.

State of the Union? A Dress Says a Lot
Claudia Kidwell, costume curator for the National Museum of American History, Washington, reflects on the style of inauguration dresses of the First Ladies, including the political and fashion messages they've communicated.

Women in America: Appearance and Fashion
Travelers to America in 1820-1842 describe women's attention to fashion, providing insight into the status and roles of women.

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