The illustration of a fashionable woman with a sky-high wig gracing the March/April issue of American Spirit, the magazine we publish for the Daughters of the American Revolution, is for a story on 18th-century hairstyles. It’s a relief to learn that an obsession with how our hair looks is far from a modern phenomenon. Our early American forefathers spent time and money on their hairstyles — whether importing wigs from Europe or forming their own distinctly American looks. In our cover feature on “Revolutionary Hair,” readers learn more about big wigs, men in pigtails and the origin of the term powder rooms.
This issue also commemorates that greenest and luckiest of holidays — St. Patrick’s Day — with a story on Irish-Americans. Every March 17, Irish-Americans gather to celebrate their heritage with parades and festivities. Did you know that the first St. Patrick’s Day parade was held in New York City in 1762 by Irish soldiers serving in the British Army? Irish-Americans have always been proud of their past, as we explore in our “Pride of the Irish” feature.
In just a few days, the Oscars will celebrate the year’s best films. A century before motion pictures, panoramas were the “silver screen” of the 1800s, enthralling audiences from Europe and America with wide-screen depictions of faraway lands, scenic wonders, urban vistas and thrilling battles. Although the advent of photography and motion pictures ended the interest in panoramas, we explore how, in their heyday, hundreds if not thousands of them flourished and entertained audiences.