The Boob Washer - Here we have a strange gizmo for women, who for some reason incomprehensible for the rest of us, wanted to wash their breasts without the inconvenience of washing the rest of the body.
Commando, a red chequer cock pigeon was used in service with the British armed forces during the Second World War to carry crucial intelligence. The pigeon carried out more than ninety missions during the war, and received the Dickin Medal (the animal equivalent of the Victoria Cross) for three particularly notable missions in 1942.
Nellie Bly (real name Elizabeth Jane Cochran, above) was a 23-year-old journalist without a job when she walked into the offices of Joseph Pulitzer’s New York World in 1887 and was given the daunting assignment of exposing the horrors of the Blackwell’s Island Insane Asylum. She rehearsed feverishly. She played mad. “Undoubtedly demented… a hopeless case,” said one of the doctors who admitted her. But inside the asylum she chronicled the awful food and awful conditions that spurred reform.
Field and Farm Work: Six-year-old Warren Frakes. Mother said he picked 41 pounds yesterday "An I don't make him pick; he picked some last year." Has about 20 pounds in his bag. Comanche County, Oklahoma.
"The Mill: One of the spinners in Whitnel Cotton Mill. She was 51 inches high. Has been in the mill one year. Sometimes works at night. Runs 4 sides - 48 cents a day. When asked how old she was, she hesitated, then said, "I don't remember," then added confidentially, "I'm not old enough to work, but do just the same." Out of 50 employees, there were ten children about her size. Whitnel, North Carolina."
Bettie Lou Williams (1932-1954) Double Body/Four Legs Williams had a parasitic twin growing out of the left side of her body. (as if you couldn't tell) It's said that she was the highest paid human oddity in history, earning up to one grand a week. She put her 11 siblings through college and purchased a 260 acre farm for her parents. She died of an asthma attack at 22. (pitch card)
The Scold's Bridle, a British invention, possibly originating in Scotland, used between the 16th and 19th Century. It was a device used to control, humiliate and punish gossiping, troublesome women by effectively gagging them. Scold comes from the 'common scold': a public nuisance, more often than not women, who habitually gossiped and quarrelled with their neighbours, while the name bridle describes the part that fitted into the mouth.