Hopkins’ very own George Peabody Library is well-known for its stunning architecture and important literary collections, but did you know that it is also a time capsule of sorts, revealing the fads, interests, and amusements of 19th century Baltimore readers? The Peabody Library was originally established in the mid-nineteenth century to be a public research library, and as such, it has a mixture of both high and lowbrow literature. The fancy-schmancy stuff gets plenty of love, so we would like to take this opportunity to present to you, our delightful readers, forgotten bibliographic gems of yore that are bound to improve your life!

Are you tired of cooking the same old food? Then why not try Soyer’s Paper-Bag Cookery, which despite initial setbacks (“the paper got burnt, and soon afterwards it exploded”) took the English culinary world by storm! Indeed, Soyer’s patented paper-bag mutton stew can’t be beat. Do you want to start a new outdoor workout routine to take advantage of the great summer weather? Noted Victorian pedestrian Daniel O’Leary will give you some great tips to make sure your walks reveal no thinness of flank. Terrified of camping and need proof to justify your fears?  A Hermit’s Wild Friends are here to help.

So, next time you want to travel back in time, leave the DeLorean at home and take a trip to the Peabody . . . or just get online and view our awesome collection set (or subscribe to our tumblr feed) featuring some of our very favorite titles that will prove beyond doubt that the past was strange!

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