History just became that much less of a nuisance.
I found this wonderful website on medieval and Renaissance material culture yesterday. It's not an academic site, so like all internet sources it should be treated with caution; it seems to be run by a reenactor, as far as I can tell. But it chiefly consists of details from manuscripts and paintings containing particular examples of material culture (carriages; clothing; furniture; boxes; etc etc etc). It takes you directly to the contemporary sources, so you can at least get a sense of how people viewed these elements of their own culture.
As I find them, I will continue add links for similar websites on the Victorian Age, the Roman Empire, the Ming Dynasty, and whatever else I can find that might be of use to writers of historical fiction.
God bless the Society for Creative Anachronism, truly!