Two Women in Their Nineties Recount Being Teenagers During the Victoria Era in a 1970 BBC Documentary

In a historical clip from the 1970 BBC documentary film short Yesterdays’s Witness: Two Victorian Girls, nonagenarians Frances “Effy” Jones and Berta Ruck recount growing up in the UK during the Victorian Era. Jones, who lived in London, recalled her days as a daring young woman who wasn’t afraid to take on new hobbies and skills. Ruck remembered her time growing up in Wales before moving to London.

Frances ‘Effy’ Jones – one of the first women to be trained to use a typewriter, and to take up cycling as a hobby – recalls the life of a young working woman in London. Berta Ruck, a romantic novelist, remembers her formative years at art school, and the culture shock she experienced after moving from her secluded home in rural Wales to the muddy hustle and bustle in the heart of Victorian London.

Both women were very happy to remember their formative years and stated that they were very proud of the time in which they did so.

We never called ourselves teenagers – but we were certainly Victorians and quite proud to be it.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.