March 13th, 2010

microscopic - thingy...

Kentucky-Tennessee Border, 1-65 - what IS that?

Searched - Google Earth, Google Maps, Google (Kentucky-Tennessee Border, I-65, etc.)

My character is driving North on 1-65. Just over the Kentucky border, he sees a welcome centre on the East side of road. Beyond the centre (further East), there is...? Some sort of irregularly-shaped track? There are some outbuildings - I'm thinking maybe something to do with horse racing (that'd be ideal, really)?

Is anyone local to the area that can tell me what that is? I don't know how to post to specific views on Google Earth, but... there's an image of the item here, if that helps jog anyone's memory...

Thanks for any help!
[Sexy people] Kate Winslet

Correspondence and post office boxes in Victorian London

Hi! I have a few questions about Victorian London. The setting is 1893-95.

I have a character who puts a personal ad in the newspaper requesting correspondence (like a pen pal). He leaves a false name and does not want the letters sent to his home address because he wants to keep the correspondence a secret from his flatmate.

My question is, how would he ask someone to get in touch with him? Google gave me this link and this link, which give examples of personal ads from the 1860-70s in New York. Most end with something like address a line to Waldo, Williamsburg Post Office. However, this is about 20-30 years prior to my timeline, and these ads are American.

-----Keywords googled: victorian personal ads, victorian pen pals, victorian london pen pals, victorian london personal ads

I mostly ask about the wording because I do not know the best way that this man could keep this a secret from his flatmate. I have tried to find out more about the use of post office boxes at this time, but have come up dry. I inquired about this in another comm, and one person suggested that these p.o. boxes did exist and could be found in places like stationery shops, hotels, etc. So this character could pop over to a stationery shop a few streets over to pick up his mail, which was set up under a different name? Would there just be a row of boxes on the wall, each requiring a key? Would the clerk behind the counter fetch it from the back and give him his mail directly?

-----Keywords googled: history post office box, post office box victorian, post office box, post office box victorian london

This is actually the central plot of my story, so any additional information about letter writing, pen pals, newspaper ads, and the postal service during this time period is very welcome as well. Thank you!

Arming turn of the (previous) century Haitian revolutionaries

searches: Haitian military history, Haiti cacaos (with variations)

For a roleplaying game, I need to figure out what some Haitian revolutionary soldier types could reasonably be armed with. They were from somewhere between 1908 and 1915, when there were something like 20 different revolutions going on. I don't necessarily need too much other detail, the game's modern-day (they're essentially undead bodyguards), but I need to know what equipment it's plausible to give them. They can have better-than-average equipment, but not anything that would have been totally out of reach of the average mercenary or peasant revolutionary (I gather they weren't well equipped)