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Section: The Colonial Era of the Society World 
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

" The century and a half preceding the American Revolution, two fairly distinct social and economic classes developed in Colonial America. One, the conservatives, composed of the rich and the well-born  of merchants, large landholders, and money-lenders -- dominated every phase of colonial life. "

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Section: The Victorian Era and Victorian America   
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"The term "Victorian" quite literally describes events in the reign of Queen Victoria (1832-1901) as well as a small margin prior and after." Victorian America 1876-1913. The information within this section and throughout the World of Society will reflect on both periods.

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Section: The Children of the Society World   
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

The children were adored and doted on by their parents, relatives, nannies and nursemaids. They would be dressed  in their finest trousers and pinafores, smothered with toys as well as given elaborate parties. "Children's parties were often as elaborate as the ones their elders gave for themselves."

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Section: The Young Ladies of the Society World 
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

The Young Ladies were sent to the finest boarding and finishing schools, taught etiquette, music and dance lessons, to be properly trained in widening their acquaintance with the New York Society.  Witness the social triumph of these young ladies as they are introduced to Society. From the moment she is born, the mother prepares her daughter to be a true gentlewoman and to marry well.

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Section: The Young Ladies: Flirtation, Courtship, Engagement and Wedding  
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"From the time she was young, a woman was groomed for this role in life-dutiful wife and mother. Her coming out meant a young woman completed her education and was officially available on the marriage mart." "Bank accounts were studied and ancestral lineages inspected, if both were met with approval, then the engagement was formalized."

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Section: The Women of the Society World    
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

These are the  women of high social standing, that would take their duties seriously within the Society World. Among these women , there were a few that were socially ambitious that would compete  in lavish entertaining, grand balls, private receptions, weddings and dinners, showing off  their latest fashions from Paris and display of wealth.

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Section: The Men of the Society World    
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"These are the men of large means in the City, among whom also the level of education was high.  The wives and daughters of these men spend more than their income upon an extravagant lifestyle as well as maintaining a status-quo in the society world. How they obtain it, as obtain it they do, heaven only knows."

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Section: All About the Lifestyles of the  Rich and Famous in New York
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

To be rich or not to be rich, that is the question. "To be anybody in New York society is out of the question unless a family has a town house, a country seat, a villa at Newport or Bar Harbor, a well-equipped stable and a yacht. To this add an apartment in Paris, a town house in London, and a huge bank account for the ladies frivolities ." 

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Section: Architecture, Victorian Style Homes and Mansions 
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"When viewing the architecture of the period the term that can best describe the age is "eclecticism", the liberty to choose from many styles. As a result of this eclecticism, styles came and went overlapping and flowing one into another during the period we call the Victorian Age."

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Section: Social and Informal Luncheons, Dinners and Afternoon Teas
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

In an informal luncheon the invitations are generally sent only a short time before the day for which the recipient is invited and are written in the first person. The afternoon tea was a name given to the British meal taken mid-afternoon, comprising finger sandwiches, scones cakes and pastries accompanied by tea. The afternoon tea gave the hostess the opportunity  to display her finest silverware and china.

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Section: Recreation and Entertainment
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

During the summer months, the wealthy members of society would go to their favorite spas and resorts, such as Rockaway Beach, Newport, Bar Harbor, Long Beach , Cape May, and Saratoga Springs, where their days and nights were filled with social activities. Lets not forget the theaters,  the opera houses of New York City , departures to Europe and other major events. My goodness, did the world of society ever sleep?

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Section: Restaurants and Hotels
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

A famous restaurant much frequented by the fashionable ladies and gentlemen of the thirties and forties was Taylor's, situated on the west side of Broadway at the northwest corner of Franklin Street. Delmonico's and Sherry's where the great society balls and horse shows were enjoyed. The Waldorf Astoria, the Astor House, and the Plaza hotel which was to be the home of New York's blue blood and riches.

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Section: Balls and Dances  
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

The scenes of the great ballrooms were of incomparable splendor. Costly, rare perfumes,  lavish costumes from France, blinding jewels that dazzled even the most distinguished guests--all this splendid gaiety was a companion to the Versailles-themed costume ball in New York.

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Section: Social Registers and Clubs  
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"It is a little book entitled the "Social Register", which is modestly put forth and well arranged list of the members of New York society, with their residences, club addresses and other useful information." Some people might not choose to have their name included, if they are not actively social. Also those who have had too much adverse publicity, were also excluded. Different guidelines for different generations.

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Section: Funeral Etiquette and Obituaries  
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"It is in the moment of deepest sorrow that etiquette performs its most vital and real service. It is the time-worn servitor Etiquette who draws the shades, who muffles the bell, who keeps the house quiet, who hushes voices and footsteps of sudden noises, who decrees that the last rites be performed smoothly and with beauty and gravity so the poignancy of grief may in so far as possible be assuaged."

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Section: Transportation:1800s
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"In the beginning of the 19th century the main mode of transportation was the horse and carriage. It wasn't until the latter part of the century that railways changed people's lives and habits. Carriages such as Barouches, Landaus, Victories, Curricles and Broughams, varied in body shape and number of horses pulling them."

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Section: Literature of the Victorian Period
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"Reading and love of literature started early in the Victorian home. It was found that a love of reading as a form of entertainment at an early age would improve one's mind and possibly even one's social position. Books played a major role in the 19th century. One of the authors that was held in much celebrity on both sides of the Atlantic was Charles Dickens."

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Section: The Domestic Servant
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

Domestic servants were employed by the upper-class families. The size of any particular household's domestic staff depended on the family's income. Neatness is indispensable: a slovenly and inattentive servant betrays a slovenly household. A hostess should never reprove her servants in the presence of her guests, it is cruel both to guest and servants and always shows the hostess in an ill-natured  light.

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Section: The Gilded Era
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"Right after the Civil War, there was a period in the United States known as "The Gilded Age". Some families had made great fortunes and they had the money and leisure to indulge in conspicuous consumption and indulgence in Society manners. As for who is in Society and who is out of society, has changed over the years. Some families who were once nobodies and upstarts managed to become accepted in society."

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Section: The Brooklyn World of Society   
Date Posted:

11/22/2010

"The social set of Brooklyn has finally realized that you don't have to have a "Fifth or Park Avenue" address to impress anyone....those who have made this transition have found out....and bitterly so, that while they were "somebody's" in Brooklyn they wind up as "nobody's" in Manhattan."

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