Monday, 15 October 2012

Mrs Perfect goes "poop, poop"

On a recent Ramble to Settle in North Yorkshire I visited the Folly museum - A beautiful 17th house now packed to the rafters with all sorts of curiosities that chart the history of this picturesque bustling town.

On the stairs I found many a photograph of many a notable Victorian local including Mrs William Perfect here...

Isn't she something? The word indomitable comes to mind when trying to describe her and I wouldn't like to meet her in a dark alley late at night. That said, she probably never went down a dark alley late at night. She was I suspect a very respectable lady, but was she perfect? We can't know, but a bit of mystery doesn't stop some of us in the Learned Society hypothesising..

What did she keep beneath those huge skirts for example? What are they hiding? Perhaps just legs, but then again perhaps Mrs Perfect was a slave to the latest technology long ago as many are today. Perhaps her skirts hid a steam boiler, a coal carriage and a small urchin rescued from a chimney and now employed to stoke her fire box.

Picture the scene. A Sunday morning - Mrs Perfect in the very pose we see her in above, gliding down Settle high street, whilst the 'good mornings' of her neighbours are met with a stern stare, yet a gentle chuff, chuff, chuff and smoke billowing out from beneath her skirts as she goes about her business..

+Many Coats+

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  1. Maybe - like Gunter Grass's 'Tin Drum', she kept her husband beneath them? From her height, I would guess she is sitting on his shoulders.

  2. A nice theory Tom, but wrong, for new evidence has already come to light from the RSAR archives. A very rear mid nineteenth century film of a Victorian lady being propelled by steam. We are very excited about this and the film will be on show at the RSAR after it has been restored by professional historical conservator, Miss Elizabeth Tudor-Ruff ably assisted by our very own Courtley Manners RSAR.

    1. I say, Mr. Many Coats, "a very REAR... film"! One is reminded of the shock one got when sitting with one's nephew, Tristam, as he searched, on my behalf, the World Wide Web for 'vintage swallow'! I have never looked at my porcelain bird collection quite the same ever since...

  3. You are quite correct Many Coats and although it has yet to be confirmed the footage does appear to show an urchin peering out from beneath the front of the Lady's skirts. This could be important and has led our very own Aunty Gary to surmise that the urchin was also employed to 'steer' his lady thus ensuring she didn't knock over anyone of any note.