Swimming Victorian Style – Beach Etiquette
The bathing machine was like a sentry-box on wheels; it was about six feet in length and width, and about eight feet high, with a peaked roof. It was set far apart from the bathing places reserved for men, to guarantee that the modest woman in her bathing costume would not be seen by the opposite sex. Sometimes the windowless box was colored with the fantastic lavishness of a canal-boat, and sometimes the whole of the superficial space was covered with advertisements. The bathing machine had a door behind and in front, and as the floor was four feet above the ground, it had to be reached by a step-ladder. The bathing machine was wheeled or slid down into the water; some were pulled in and out of the surf by a pair of horses with a driver and others by human power. Read illustrated story here.