Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, 23 November 2012

A Victorian notebook

Victorian noteb   
     I recently purchased a little notebook which the seller said she found in an old box full of late 1800’s books. I acquired it at a real bargain price as it was scuffed, did not have a date and I would dare say half the content is written in a nearly un-readable hand….. but that is always how you find treasures.
    What attracted me to it was that it contained poems, and now I will ask my gentle readers if they have read any of them before….. 

The first one which is very long starts with :

It was in a country hospital
One …..?... winter day
A decent women asked to see
Young ….?...Gray.

    The writing is really hard to read, so I will try to take some time to decipher it. There are several other poems, also in terrible handwriting. 

    But here is one that is written in a nicer script :

It was a wig

Our Grandpapa.
Was very fond
Of sleeping in his chair,
He’d take it in
The garden, when
The day was bright and fair.

One sunny day
He fell asleep,
The sun shone on his hair;
Some naughty boys
Caught sight of him,
As he lay sleeping there.

Said they ‘ What fun
‘t would be to tie
His hair fast to the chair !’
And so they got
A piece of string
And fastened Grandpapa  there !

They hid behind
The trees close by,
Waiting to see the fun.
And ready, when
They saw him wake,
Quick down the lane to run.

A fly jumped on
Poor Grandpapa’s nose !
He got up with a bound !
And when those bad.
Boys peeped, they saw
His hair upon the ground !

They ran away
In dreadful fright,
They thought that he was dead,
They didn’t know
That Grandpapa wore
A wig upon his head !

There is one full address :
Charles Elwef Fulwood
Potteric Carr, Loversall. Doncaster

    I found the address, it is a natural reserve, and there is a Charles E. Fulwood  in the 1901 census who was born in 1866.

    There is another address for a Miss Brown, who lived in Yorkshire.
On the front cover there is a name :
Mary ….?... Fulwood ….?...
Title Young …?...Gray.

    It is in the same rough hand writing of the first poem which runs over 14 pages, but a look online gave me 100’s of Mary Fulwood.

    Can I make my conclusion that this might be an original poem by a lady called Mary Fulwood, written sometime during the Victorian era ?

Mary ? Fulwood

' It was in a country hospital.....'

It was  a wig

Parlour game scores ?


  1. Good luck with deciphering that handwriting. My guess would be that is original poems and not copied. Except for me, many of my family members like writing short stories, family history etc. When my brothers were children they even wrote and drew their own comic stories. I found a little booklet the other day that my middle brother wrote on history about Albert Einstein and a few other people, when he was a child, and he also included a few drawings. I wonder if any young people still do this in our computer age.

  2. That's absolutely fascinating - and I'm not a poetry fan myself! Just love the historical scenario though. Good luck with your research.

    Must say, it's a comfort that they wrote illegibly in those days too! My script is difficult to scan, so thank goodness for computers, otherwise I'd never be able to blog! Love reading yours, so am inviting you to return the favour sometime and visit mine at With some more posts under my belt, am considering possibly enlarging some of them to make up a children's book - any views would be much appreciated and acknowledged too.

    1. A book about the history of toys, and maybe some vintage pattern reworked to fit with modern supplies would be a wonderful idea !

  3. What a great treasure! The various examples of penmanship are beautiful. Would it be that several different people added their poems to this little collection?

    1. I also thought it might be several persons, as the handwritings are different.

      My first thought is that the lady who wrote the first poem did so rather roughly, and then maybe copied the poem in another book ? Then used the notebook as a ' scrap' for writing address, odds and ends etc....