I’ve now completed the first goal I set for myself when I created this blog – transcribing all the non-fiction articles from Volume 22 of The Strand Magazine. Incidentally, I picked this volume because a) I happened to own it, b) the binding had fallen apart so it wouldn’t get any more destroyed by scanning, c) the pages themselves were of good quality, and d) it included some interesting content.
The magazine also includes quite a lot of fiction (which I haven’t transcribed), including in this volume several parts of The Hound of the Baskervilles, by A. Conan Doyle, and The First Men in the Moon by H. G. Wells. If everything was up to that quality, I’d be transcribing the fiction as well, but for some reason the Strand heavily promoted the work of Max Pemberton (somehow both over-sensationalised and tedious at the same time) and W. W. Jacobs (‘amusing’ tales of country life), both of whose work I find really tedious.
Some of my favourite articles in this volume:
- Hands Round the Coast, which shows how the coastguard worked at the time.
- The Most Sensational Motor Ride, which gives us a glimpse at how bicycles were becoming supplanted by motorised vehicles at the ‘modern thing’ even as far back as 1901.
- Across the Atlantic in a Twelve-Foot Boat, for the motivation it gave me to investigate other attempts to go to sea in tiny vessels.
- The Lost Land of England, both for the history, and for the interesting typewriter-produced illustrations.
- A Parlour Séance, for the explanations of magic tricks.
- The series of Curiosities, mostly reader-provided amusing/interesting photographs – the Edwardian equivalent of social media image sharing sites.
If you want to read all these articles, and the ones I haven’t transcribed, I’ve uploaded the original page images to archive.org. It also looks like you can embed archive.org books on WordPress sites like this one (although as usual with WordPress the instructions on the wordpress.com site are wrong/out of date), so here it is:
One of the most time consuming parts of transcribing this material is cropping all the illustrations. There are more than 900 in this volume, and you can browse them all in this Flickr album.
I have two more Strand Magazine volumes scanned and cropped – now I need to work on splitting them into individual articles and transcribing/correcting the text. I think we’ll jump forwards a little to Volume 30 (1905) next.