It’s Definitely Summer

It is currently 85.7 degrees in my office (the air conditioning is off due to the roof restoration project), and I just keep thinking that today would be a great day to go swimming. People thought the same way in the 18th and 19th centuries; President John Quincy Adams swam in the Potomac River and even recorded a near-drowning incident in his diary in 1825. Supposedly he didn’t wear any clothes when he went swimming, but that’s not really a blog-appropriate topic. In Europe, people flocked to spa towns like Bath to both drink and immerse themselves in the water, which purportedly had healthful properties. And as this print from 1826 shows, they wore lots of clothes when they went swimming:

Somehow I don’t think I’ll be wearing a bonnet with my bathing suit if I do manage to make it to the pool today.


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