19th Century Guide To Courtship And Marriage Is Insane, Weirdly Realistic

Finding love was just as awkward back then as it is now.

Courtesy of the Boston Public Library’s online collection, these stereograph slides depict a 19th century guide to the stages of courtship to marriage.

BAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAH.

That is all. Enjoy.

Step 1: The Bashful Lover Makes His First Call


Translation: New strangers tolerate each other on awkward first date.

Boston Public Library / Via flickr.com

Step 2: Second Call. Improvement on Call No. 1


Translation: Negative first base while your mom naps a few feet away.

Boston Public Library / Via flickr.com

Step 3: Third Call. Mother Wants to Know if He Is Coming.


Translation: Your mom uses scare tactics on your new romantic interest.

Step 4: Waiting for Him.


Translation: Because your mother has scared off your date (?), wait around for a bit until he decides to come back.

Boston Public Library / Via flickr.com

Step 5: One O’Clock in the Morning


Translation: Platonic sleepover. If bed is unavailable, resort to use of living room chairs.

Step 6: Half-Past One in the Morning


Translation: Get caught by your parents and try to desperately explain to them how you “weren’t doing anything!”

Step 7: A Quarter to Two in the Morning


Translation: After 15 minutes of arguing, father makes an executive decision and kicks your new romantic interest out. (You are probably grounded.)

Step 8: The Proposal


Translation: The sex is really good.

Step 9: Showing the Engagement Ring


Translation: Look at meeeeeeeee! Be jealous of meeeeee!

Step 10: My Wife To-Morrow.


Translation: Kiss your fiancé goodnight and allow reality to start setting in.

Step 11: (This card missing from Boston Public Library’s photo set.)


Translation: Quickie in the broom closet.

Step 12: Decorating for the Wedding


Translation: Getting buzzed with your besties while you get ready.

Step 13: The Bridesmaids Ready for the Ceremony


Translation: Everyone feels threatened; tries to prove their bond of friendship with the bride is strongest.

Step 14: The Bride Ready for the Ceremony


Translation: At this point, the bride-to-be pushes her feelings deep down inside and tries not to look miserable.

Step 15: The Wedding March


Translation: The point of no return.

Step 16: The Wedding


Translation: Yada yada yada… definitely having a panic attack.

Step 17: Placing the Wedding Ring


Translation: The home stretch.

Step 18: The Blessing


Translation: Really? We’re not done?

Step 19: The Bridegroom’s Kiss


Translation: Tasteful makeout session.

Step 20: The Mother’s Kiss


Translation: Your mother is devastated over losing her baby. But congratulations and all that stuff.

Step 21: The Father’s Congratulations


Translation: Dad attempts to show no emotion whatsoever. Already hates his son-in-law.

Step 22: The Wedding Breakfast


Translation: The nursing of the hangovers.

Step 23: Alone at Last


Translation: “Do not disturb.” If ya know what I’m saying.

Step 24: Married and Settled


Translation: Sex every other Tuesday.

Step 25: “I Just Knew It Would Be a Boy”


Translation: Women are incredible, psychic beings who bring life into the world.

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