Steampunk Festival Transforms Waltham Massachusetts (PICTURES, VIDEO)

Huffington Post UK  |  By Posted: Updated: 22/05/2012 16:21

Revellers wearing goggle specs, Victorian dress and sci-fi appendages descended upon Waltham, Massachusetts, to celebrate everything that is steampunk this weekend.

Borne from a combination of sci-fi literature and Victoriana, this hybrid genre is swiftly gaining popularity and is no longer and underground oddity.

Combining elements of history with modern technology, the term "steampunk" was coined in 1987 by sci-fi writer Kevin Jeter, as a means of separating the “Victorian-style speculative fiction” from the "cyberpunk" movement epitomised by William Gibson and Bruce Bethke.

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steampunk in waltham massachusetts

They have the technology (and the garb)

Waltham, known as Watch City, for its association with the timepiece industry, has declared itself the Original Steampunk City.

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Literature from the official festival site asks: “What would the world look like if modern technology were available at the turn of the twentieth century when steam was king, corsets were mandatory and man was just learning to fly?”.

steampunk in waltham massachusetts

Women walk all over a performer known as The Human Floor

It continues: “What started as an underground style movement by technology geeks and science-fiction writers has entered the mainstream, influencing art, fashion, interior design, literature and entertainment.”

The event was the third annual celebration to be held in the city and was hosted by The Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation.

Pictures and video from last year's steampunk festival
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  • People look at a computer where the keyboard substituted with a typewriter at the Watch City Festival celebrating Steampunk in Waltham, Massachusetts May 13, 2012. Steampunk is a movement that explores the notion of what the world might look like had modern technology been available at the turn of the twentieth century. (Photo credit: REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi)

  • Brendan Wilson shows off a mechanical arm made out of cardboard at the Watch City Festival celebrating Steampunk in Waltham, Massachusetts May 13, 2012. Steampunk is a movement that explores the notion of what the world might look like had modern technology been available at the turn of the twentieth century. (Photo credit: REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi)

  • Women stand on a performer who calls himself 'The Human Floor' as he lays on a bed of broken glass at the Watch City Festival celebrating Steampunk in Waltham, Massachusetts May 13, 2012. Steampunk is a movement that explores the notion of what the world might look like had modern technology been available at the turn of the twentieth century. (Photo credit: REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

  • International Steampunk City in Waltham, 2011. (Photo credit: YouTube)

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