What Is Steampunk?

The term Steampunk was born out of the imagination of American author K.W. Jeter who first coined the term in April 1987 to describe the emerging Victorian-style science fiction genre.  It is a mash-up of historical elements, technology and aesthetics elements inspired by 19th century steam-powered machinery. 


Even if you’re not familiar with the concept of Steampunk, you’ve probably seen an example of it without realizing it. You will find bits of Steampunk all over mainstream culture, from television shows like Penny Dreadful and Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, and movies like Wild Wild West and Sherlock Holmes.

About The 

  Cortland County          Steampunk Festival

Starting in afternoon of Friday, September 27th, and not ending until the early afternoon of Sunday, September 29th, the Cortland County Steampunk Festival offers a family-friendly program filled with entertainment, exhibits, vendors, presenters, games and much more!

The extensive history of mechanical innovation in Cortland embodies the steampunk spirit. We were built by Victorian industrialists, who used new machines and fabrication methods to drive economic development. Companies like Brockway Carriage Company, The Wickwire Brothers, and the Cortland Corset Company created a hotbed of innovation. In Upstate New York, we saw the traditions and fashions of the Victorian Era clash with the introduction of new technologies.


Join a wide array of creative organizations in Cortland County as we delve into this moment in time - through machines, performances, music, costumes, lectures, and more. Gears to Corsets is the perfect backdrop to explore the industrial history that informs our curiosity today.

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