Picture Power: Proof that Victorians weren’t as serious as you thought

“A photograph is a most important document, and there is nothing more damning to go down to posterity than a silly, foolish smile caught and fixed forever. “ —Mark Twain

Vacation sports at the seaside, 1897

I don’t have to tell you that Victorians aren’t exactly known for their broad smiles and light-hearted humor. Unlike today, smiling for a photo simply wasn’t a thing that people did, as Mark Twain exemplifies in the quote above. This lack of friendly grins has somewhat influenced how we view Victorians from our modern perspective, perhaps making them seem more stuffy and grave than they actually were.

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10 intriguing female revolutionaries that you didn’t learn about in history class


We all know male revolutionaries like Che Guevara, but history often tends to gloss over the contributions of female revolutionaries that have sacrificed their time, efforts, and lives to work towards burgeoning systems and ideologies. Despite misconceptions, there are tons of women that have participated in revolutions throughout history, with many of them playing crucial roles. They may come from different points on the political spectrum, with some armed with weapons and some armed with nothing but a pen, but all fought hard for something that they believed in.

Let’s take a look at 10 of these female revolutionaries from all over the world that you probably won’t ever see plastered across a college student’s T-shirt.

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25 little-known facts about the outlaw Jesse James

James-Younger Gang

On July 21, 1873, infamous outlaw and American folk figure Jesse James robbed his first train in Adair, Iowa with the help of his posse, the James-Younger Gang. The outlaws used stolen tools to pry up part of the track, pulling it aside with rope as the train rounded a blind curve. They boarded the crashed train wearing white Ku Klux Klan masks and searched the safe that they believed held gold bullion, only to be disappointed by a meager $2,000. They then collected valuables from the passengers, bringing the total up to about $3,000 (about $50,000 by today’s standards).

After 141 years, Jesse James remains one of the most iconic and romanticized figures in American history, even though he had little regard for the lives of others (such as the engineer of the train, who died as a result). Many people even see Jesse James as a type of Robin Hood or folk hero, despite his sometimes murderous ways.

Although separating fact from fiction can be quite a task when it comes to folk figures like Jesse, we’ve dug up some interesting tidbits about this mythical man of the West that we think you’ll enjoy. Giddyup!

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