This year for the Blogging from A to Z Challenge, I’m writing about the 1800s in celebration of Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland’s race around the world in 1889, the subject of my new novel based on this adventure: Liz and Nellie.

Some letters are harder than others to find the right topic. G is for so many items in both the 1800s and in the story of Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland’s race around the world.

nellie 1890


G is for grip sack:

Nellie Bly only took one piece of luggage with her. A small sack  that looked more like a doctor’s bag than a bag to take around the world.


G is for ghillie hat:

Nellie wore the hat with front and back flaps as part of her now-famous ensemble.


G is for Ghormley:

The name of the tailor who made Nellie’s traveling dress. She went to him after getting the assignment and had her first fitting at 1:00, the second later that afternoon and it was finished.

“I want a dress that will stand constant wear for three months,” I added, and then let the responsibility rest on him.

Bringing out several different materials he threw them in artistic folds over a small table, studying the effect in a pier glass before which he stood.

He did not become nervous or hurried. All the time that he was trying the different effects of the materials, he kept up a lively and half humorous conversation. In a few moments he had selected a plain blue broadcloth and a quiet plaid camel’s-hair as the most durable and suitable combination for a traveling gown. –Nellie Bly


And a bonus.

G is for Gas Lamps

When I read about Mme. Verne lighting the gas lamps in the house of Jules Verne when Nellie stopped in for a quick visit, I was curious about how that happens. Here are some videos that show information about gas lamps.

Gas streetlights from the 1800s still being used in London today:

Interview with someone’s grandma and she talks about gas lights in the home
Part 1: start at 1:49 min

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