Hang On To Your Uterus!

With almost any new technology, people will come up with panicked theories about the effect it will have on society, morality, physical well-being, or any other number of things that people love to crusade against. So it was with the railway. Many people were concerned about the dangers to the body when traveling at speeds of up to an eye-watering 50 mph. There were theories that the human body would simply melt away due to the sheer speed. An even more alarming idea was that women’s uteruses would fly out of their bodies as they were accelerated to that speed. Of course, that proved to be untrue, but in the hang-onto-your-hats world of Victorian locomotion, it was initially seen as a very real threat to health. Another danger that female travelers faced in the in the early years of rail travel was tunnels — not the structures themselves, but the risk of dastardly men attempting to lean over and kiss them in the dark. Indeed, many guidebooks advised women to go so far as to put pins between their lips before entering a tunnel.