I’m doing some research for a book I’m working on and I have come across some interesting things with regard to Victorian fashions and customs (Victorian era 1837-1901). Did you know that widowers were expected to to mourn for a mere three months while the proper mourning period for widows was up to four years. The longer a widow mourned by wearing black, the more respect and devotion to the departed was afforded. Most people had their clothes dyed black. It was a great source of revenue for the dyers and most of their income was derived this way during the Victorian Era.
In the 1890s it became so popular for women to have exotic feathers and plumes (and even whole stuffed birds!) on their enormous wide-brimmed hats, that the Florida everglades where nearly decimated by overhunting. By 1900, more than five million birds were killed, 95% of Florida’s shore birds had been slaughtered by plume hunters. Oh the vanity of women! Thankfully, the fad died out as environmentalists like Adeline Knapp came to the forefront.