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We have put together a spring issue of family tree news for you It is surprising how the time goes so quickly and a lot of things have been done on the group this month
Hi All This month we welcome 3 new members, Shirley who joined us on the 1st May, Peter Elworthy who joined 2nd May and Helen, joining on 5th May. Welcome to you all. Unfortunately, we have not heard from Peter yet, so if you are reading this Peter, please write in - we are looking forward to hearing from you. Shirley lives in Killarney in Manitoba, Canada. She has been researching her ancestor James Henry Keyes and his family. Melissa has been helping her allot with this. Finally, we have Helen from New Zealand, researching her Rishton (also Rushton) family from the Accrington area of Lancashire. Here is what Shirley has to say, "I am particularly
interested in my 'Rishton' ancestry, because of the stories my Hard times, partly due to persistent recusancy. If I can fill that 200 year gap then I should be able to prove or disprove 'our family story' - if it is correct then the pre 1600 is already in the public domain. If incorrect then I will continue to look for the correct line.
Helen is originally from Lancashire and is proud of her roots there, she last returned to the UK in 2008. You will be pleased to know that the number of messages during the month of April have been better than compared to those from 2009, in 2009 we had 153 messages, this April we had 228. The messages coming in for May are looking good; so far we have had 125. So well done, everyone! Keep more rolling in. Chell in Australia has had an interesting month, finding another skeleton in the wardrobe. Whilst researching her Oldfield family tree, she has just discovered that there is Aborigine in her family via her grandfather. Also, Chell found out something interesting about her cousin, Mary Oldfield Born 1954, who was brought up by her Uncle Peter and Auntie Barbara. Mary is in fact her father's daughter! So Chell now has a sister, 12 years her senior. Poor Chell is trying to find the courage to get in contact with her. Keep us informed Chell.
At the beginning of April, Vera was sent a message from a man who has links on Ancestry to her family. It appears they share a family member called William Edward on Vera's tree but he is shown as Teddy in this man's tree. This 'Teddy' is Vera's stepbrother as her Mum remarried when she was 14. Although Vera is willing to tell this gentleman all she knows about Teddy, she does not know whether to tell him about how his father died, as he committed suicide and it is a delicate subject. Lots of advice was given to her by our members, which I hope helped. Easter came and went and things were picking up again after the holiday. I asked everyone how far he or she have got on their trees, with offers of Help to get back even further. Irene wrote in to say that she had got back as far as 1737 and wants to go back even further. Sue Duckles said she got back to Timothy Dalton born late 1700's in South Cave, East Yorkshire. We have been featuring some really good photographs on the Home Page recently. It is interesting to look more closely at these photos, sometimes revealing in the background, more clues etc. However, we are running a little low on new photos and would be very grateful if you could find time to add some more to your photo albums (see left hand margin). If you do not have a photo album and are not sure how to make one etc, just let Vera or myself know and we will happy to start one for you
Dianne is still stuck on info on Thomas Grainger who married Elizabeth Burkett on 24 Sept. 1826 at St. Luke's Church, Fins bury, London. She did come across a christening for a Thomas Grainger, born in St. Peter's Parish in Leeds, which seems to fit the bill. Shortly after this, I placed in her photo album, a copy of the marriage details of Thomas and Elizabeth, taken from Ancestry. 14th April arrived and Vera asked if anyone would be so kind as to think up a logo we could use for the Familytreeforyou Group Page. So far we have no takers. 16th April and I found on Tribal Pages, some more details on Melissa's Bailey family. Melissa has followed this up by e-mailing the researcher. Keep us informed Melissa if you have any new leads! Phillip has been looking for birth details on his ancestor Dennis Herring from Surrey, without any luck at the moment. Chell continues with her research on her Gason family tree and Grace needed help on her Abby tree. 27th April - Vera and I put on some interesting articles on straw plaiting, which was an important occupation in the 1800's. Those who have ancestors in rural, farming areas, you may find them doing this. 29th April - Maureen in Australia asking if we could find any more details on her ancestor, Charlotte Crofton Fatherly. Apparently she was famous in Melbourne around the 1880's-1890's on the concert pianist circuit. Charlotte was wells know composer and her music sheets can still be bought today. She was an Associate with the Royal Academy of Music in London. It is sad that there is little info on her. I have been trying to ages to find a photo of her as well. Maureen is still trying to find out when her great grandparents, George Crofton Fatherly, who was 33 in 1864, and born
in Washington, County Durham, came out to Australia. His wife was Charlotte nee Rose, who was 32 in 1864 and born in Hastings, Sussex. At the beginning of May, we had a flurry of 3 new members. Shirley from Canada, is researching her ancestor James Henry Keyes B1824 in Ontario, Canada, he married Mary Ann Beaumond. Melissa has been kindly helping Shirley with this research. New member Peter has yet to write in. Grace has asked us for help with research on her Grandmother Alice Smith B1845 in South Shields. Alice's father was William Smith; children were Anna, Maria and William. Grace would like info on marriages of these relatives etc. William's wife was Hannah. She came out to Australia and her family followed later. Any info please would be great! Today we also had a 'roll call' to see who was actively looking in on the group or taking part. Sadly, the response was not very good but thanks to Irene, Sue D., Ali, Roger (get better soon!), Dianne, Judy and Chell for replying.
4th May - if you are interested in a couple of good articles on Florence Nightingale, check them out. Lots of messages to and fro'ing re Helen's Rishton/Rushton family, of which we are still looking. 17th May - Vera and I have started a sister group on Yahoo called BYGONEMEMORIES. It is all about sharing memories etc of your childhood and what you can remember of your grandparents etc. Anything to do with growing up, places you remember, how you spent your school holidays etc. Old family traditions, recipes etc. Here is the link if you would like to join: http://uk.groups. yahoo.com/ group/BygoneMemories/ You will see some familiar faces on there already! Well, that is the review of the Group's activity since April. Please keep your queries/articles coming in, that way the Group does not go 'stale'. If you see an interesting article on genealogy etc, please send it in and share. Lets give those trees a good shake, see how far you can get back and fill in the missing relatives also.
Christine & Vera
The History of Nantwich Market
In the year 1500, according to the Harleian Manuscript in the British Museum, the Lords of Nantwich obtained permission to hold a Saturday Market in Nantwich. In 1538 Sir Thomas Foulshurst, a son of one of the lords, laid down the rules and regulations for the tolls and stall age of all the merchandise sold in the town on market day. Thus every Saturday Nantwich became an open market town with stallholders selling their wares from open stalls in various parts of the town in positions given to them by the town officers. The only sign of anything that could be remotely called a market hall appear to be that of Booth Hall which was an inferior structure or booth, probably of canvass or wood. It was from here that the travelling drapers - called foreigners by the townsfolk - were ordered to sell their wares. Market Day saw the goose-girl driving her geese and milkmaids with pails hanging from wooden yokes carried on their shoulders. Farmers' wives came to sell eggs, and vagrants and quacks joined the travellers, people and animals jostling together in the busy town. According to the late Mr. E. Lane of Nantwich, the butchers sold their meat on open stalls in front of the former shop of Stretch and Harlock. Any unwanted offal was taken down the nearby lane and thrown into the River Weaver, so that, for a period, the name Castle Street became known as Pudding Lane. Fish was sold on boards with tubs underneath for the resultant garbage. In summer there was dust and flies, and in winter, mud. Potters and ironmongers were a little further away in Pillory Street with the onion sellers, and at the far end stalls were piled high with parsnips, turnips and garlic. Market Day was a social gathering where local news was discussed and savoured. In the High Town stood the Cage used for wrongdoers and for proclamations beginning "Oyez! Oyez!" This was near to where the present Rumbelow's T.V. shop now stands. In 1720 the Prince of Wales (afterwards GEORGE II) gave £600 for the building of a Market Hall with a Sessions Room above. This was situated in the High Town.
A figure of the Prince, carved in stone, stood on the south side of the building. It looked very grand but did not stand the test of time, for seventeen years later the Sessions-cum-Market Hall fell down. The disaster happened on a market day in May 1737 at 6 o'clock in the evening. Most of the people had gone home and luckily casualties were not as heavy as they might have been had it happened earlier in the day, although "many were terribly bruised and hurt." Nine people died, one of them an old woman dressed in rags whose name was Mary Icklin. ("on Saturday 14th May 1737 about six in the evening the Sessions and Market House at Namptwich fell down, by which nine persons were killed." Gentleman's Magazine 1737 p314) There was much talk afterwards, for folk had said that the hall would soon tumble down. They looked at the rubble that was left and at the broken effigy carved in stone of the Prince that a few hours before had adorned the building. With a fondness most touching they carried the upper part of the statue and placed it in the garden of Buford Hall on a rockery among the greenery beneath the yew trees, where it became known as the King of Bur land. The Parish Registers for Nantwich, Wren bury and Wybunbury for 1737 record the following burials: Nantwich May 15th Mary Icklin, a Pauper, killed by the Market house falling in this town the 14th, buried the 15th. May 16th Patient, Daughter of Jane Smith; killed at the same time and place. May 16th Catherine, Wife of Thos. Fletcher, Taylor, killed at the same time and place. And Sarah Hewitt, Wid. Wren bury th Elizabeth, wife of John Thomson of Wren bury Parish was interred 15 May 1737. N.B. She was killed by ye fall of ye Market house in Nantwich with eight others. Wybunbury May 16th James Burscoe, of Stapely, Yeoman, and Killed by the fall of the Market House at Namptwich where many more lost their lives. The burial entries above account for six persons. The other three, no doubt coming from surrounding villages, would have been buried there. Back in the High Street opposite Castle Street, the people of Nantwich rebuilt the Market Hall with the Sessions Room above it. All went well until 22 years later in 1759 when the Sessions were being held in the upper room. There was the sound of a loud crash and everyone rushed to descend the stairs. Many were hurt in their efforts to reach safety. ("While the justices were holding their Sessions a sudden crash so greatly alarmed the court that in the hurry and confusion of getting down, many people, expecting the whole fabric to fall every moment, were much hurt." Partridge’s History of Nantwich pp 82/3 ) From then on the Sessions were held at Knutsford and the upper room was taken down in 1760. The lower part was used as a market place for the sale of eggs, poultry and butter. The lower building opposite Castle Street was altered and was rather pleasing to the eye. In his "History of Nantwich," Hall describes it as follows:" Its
roof was supported by brickwork and semi-circular arches rested on nine granite columns, the only ornament being a plume of feathers - the badge of the Prince of Wales - on the cornice above the central pillar on the south side." And so it remained for over a hundred years. In 1868 a new Market Hall was built at a cost of £2,000 on land given by John Tollemache Esq. M.P. This was opened on 30th July. The old Market Hall in High Town was shortly afterwards demolished and a new thoroughfare called Market Street was constructed. You may ask "What is the sense in keeping the present Market Hall?" Well I have always found that people in the main like markets the way they are. Other Cheshire towns still cling to their markets as something different from the sophisticated market centres, which in time become commonplace and a haunt of vandals. Nantwich needs to keep its down-to-earth Market Hall of the old style.
Columbia Road was originally a weekday market that emerged in the street in the early 1800’s. It ran the length of Columbia Road and included The Birdcage and the Royal Oak pubs. It was not a specialist market then, just a mixture of stalls selling everyday needs. There were many philanthropists around in the Victorian era and one of them; Baroness Coutts decided to build a proper market for the traders. This would take the form of a large building with shops around the edge of a market square, with living accommodation for the traders included in the design. The building work went ahead in 1864 and the market was used for fish and foodstuff traders. Unfortunately the traders were not too keen on the new market and it’s rules and regulations. This, coupled with the lack of trade, made it doomed from the start. The traders started moving back to the street itself. The market building was gradually taken over by the furniture trade and became, along with the shops in the industrial units for the cabinetmakers. As this transformation was taking place most of the market traders moved out to start trading in other established markets in the area. As most of the furniture makers moving into the area were of Jewish origin permission was granted for Sunday trading to be allowed in Columbia Road. Because there were fewer traders now, the market was much reduced in size and they set up their stalls between the two pubs. Today it covers an even shorter distance as the stalls in the main market have gradually congregated in one place. The weekday market gradually died out and a specialised
Sunday market became a permanent fixture. The licensing of pitches in 1927 to sell specific goods caused traders selling other goods in the market to gradually disappear and create Columbia Road Flower Market. To prevent the market remaining empty during the winter months the council brought in regulations in the 1960’s to ensure an all year round turnout by traders. Every trader risks losing their license if the do not set up their stall at least once every four weeks. This means that you can buy plants for the home or garden all year round. As well as tools and utensils to aid their growth. It’s a great market and if you spend enough time there you will see many celebrities in attendance.
By the second half of the 17th century old barriers to retail selling were coming down and superior shops geared to gentry tastes were opening. "Nether Row" i.e. the lowest street of the Market, became a favourite promenade for the gentry and earned the name which it still holds today "Gentleman's Walk". "The Walk" had high quality shops selling luxury goods – hats, gloves, leather goods, tea and coffee. It was an hospitality centre with at least 4 large coaching inns facing the Market Place. Only The Lamb now remains. The Rev Joshua Larwood, a country rector, described Gentleman’s Walk:-“…… thronged with a collection of very interesting character – the merchant, the manufacturer, the magistrate, the provincial yeoman, the military officer, the affluent landlord and thriving tenant, the recruiting officer, the clergy, faculty, barristers and all the various characters of polished and professional society. Whilst the young Horatio Nelson and his brother William were at school in Norwich, they were visited by their great-uncle John, who took them out for a day in the city. They had coffee at Saunders Coffee House on Gentleman’s Walk and visited the Guildhall. Later they went round the market place, where they listened to the traders, crying out that they were now selling their wares at cheaper prices. This was followed by a fine dinner at the White Swan, near St Peter Mancroft church.
From the 1670s until the 1770s the woollen textile industries of the West Riding grew at a dramatic pace. Textiles made in the northern woollen towns were in great demand, "utilized everywhere for clothing ordinary people who could not go to the price of fine cloths made in the West of England or in East Anglia". See act for the regulation of narrow cloth production opposite. This extraordinary expansion of output propelled the region into a position of commercial pre-eminence. By developing a manufacturing potential beyond the capability of either the West of England and East Anglia, Yorkshire became the heartland for the production of woollen cloth of all types. Increased productivity was made possible by a series of changes in the organisation of traditional production processes, changes that not only transformed the domestic nature of the industry but would also lead to its eventual collapse and replacement by the factory system. This rapid economic and cultural change came earlier to the Calder dale area than other surrounding textile districts. "...and so nearer we came to Halifax we found the houses thicker and the villages greater...if we knocked at the door of any of the master manufacturers we presently saw a house full of lusty fellows, some at the dye vat, some dressing the cloth, some in the loom." Daniel Defoe 1724 "These people are full of business, not a beggar not an idle person to be seen. This business is the clothing trade." Daniel Defoe 1724 The traditional local structure of cloth making encouraged the development of a distinctive mixture of communities and customs, which created a regional character unique in English textile producing areas. See weaver's cottages below.
Large-scale production of Calder dale’s speciality, Kersey, was essentially a rural industry controlled by independent clothiers who organised the manufacture of woollen cloth in their own workshops and surrounding cottages. Within Halifax parish the term "clothier" was applied to all who made cloth for sale at the local market. Whether they made a single or several pieces a week Calder dale clothiers were a broadly egalitarian and relatively undifferentiated spectrum of local society dominated by the "middling" sort.
Regardless of output all clothiers assumed a pivotal role, occupying a position between journeyman and merchant. Although many employed others and enjoyed the status of producers, clothiers often laboured alongside their artisans and were regarded as fellow workers. For most of the eighteenth century work customs reinforced shared social values. Where economic demarcation existed these divisions were mutually acceptable and unlikely to become a source of enmity. "If they were so populous...how much must they be increased since? The trades having been prodigiously encouraged and increased by the great demand for their Kersey's for clothing the armies abroad, insomuch that it is the opinion of some that know the town, and its bounds very well, that the number of people in the vicarage of Halifax is increased one fourth, at least, within the last forty years..." Daniel Defoe A Tour Through The Whole Island of Great Britain 1724
A growing population maintained the rapid increase in the production of woollen cloth during the eighteenth century. Parish registers tell us that a large number of skilled workers relied for their livelihood on employment in the textile trades making pieces for clothiers. "Among the manufacturers houses are likewise scattered an infinite number of cottages where dwell the workmen which are employed. The women and children of which are always busy carding and spinning, so that no hands being unemployed all can gain their bread, even the youngest to the most ancient. Hardly anything above four years old but its hands are sufficient to itself." Daniel Defoe 1724
Most weavers and artisans regarded taking in work put out by clothiers as an opportunity to enjoy regular employment with relatively high wages. Kersey making influenced values and customs. Craft workers considered themselves independent regardless of their wage labour status. Their ability to control the daily pace of work within their own homes placed the control of production truly in the hands of the worker.
Weavers sometimes "clubbed" resources together to build their homes and workshops.
Social mobility was a notable feature of Calder dales textile communities at this time. Working for a wage within the domestic system provided both economic stability and security for credit, which was easily extended to industrious young men judged to be sober and of good character.
Hard work and credit enabled some weavers to establish themselves as clothiers and manufacture on their own account. "...their journeymen being so little removed from the Degree and Condition of their Masters, are as likely to set up for themselves by their industry and frugality of a few years. Thus it is that the working people are generally moral, sober and industrious and the Goods are well made and exceedingly cheap". Josiah Tucker "Instructions for Travellers" 1758
"As for the town of Halifax itself, there is nothing extraordinary except on market day, and then indeed it is a prodigious thing by reason of the multitude of people who throng thither, as well to sell their manufactures as to buy provisions; and so great is the confluences of people hither, that except Leeds and Wakefield, nothing in all the north of England can come near it". Daniel Defoe 1724 Merchants and their Factors. The growing market for cloth created opportunities for local men to enter into business. Busy merchants in Leeds, London and Holland who could not regularly attend Halifax market hired the services of reliable men to order and buy cloth on their behalf. These agents, or "cloth factors", made a living by charging the merchant a fee for arranging the transaction. Acting as a factor could be no easy task. To make a deal the factor would have to drive a bargain from the maximum price allowed by the merchant against the absolute minimum demanded by the clothier.
Calder dale history timeline 1850 - 1900AD
Reform and Development
The traumatic urban-industrial experience eventually set in motion a movement of social reform, however, in which Luddites and Chartists, friendly societies and co-operative groups, trade unions and reformers, industrial paternalism and the new municipal authorities all helped to remove the worst excesses of unfettered industrialism. Model villages and co-operative 'club' houses emerged alongside some of the more squalid mill terraces and overcrowded cellar dwellings, whilst the emerging civic pride came to be expressed in an increasing range of public buildings and amenities.
Parliamentary enclosure represented a final phase of moor land reclamation for food production for the expanding population, leaving its mark in the high-lying lathe-house hill farms (which usually combined under one roof a house, barn and mistal), whilst huge reservoirs were constructed to quench the thirst and improve the sanitation of the new industrial communities. The transport revolution that had been initiated by canal and turnpike was completed during the 1840s with the opening of the first railway line through Calderdale.
In Halifax the second half on the 19th century was marked by exceptional growth, with urban development taking the form of continuous westward and northward expansion, which eventually engulfed the nearby settlements of King Cross, Mount Pellon and Haley Hill. Much of this later development was due to the dispersal of textile mills over the
higher ground to the west, rather than their continued concentration in the Hebble Valley, following the provision of mains water and drainage.
Alongside this industrial development, schools and mechanics institutes, hospitals, almshouses and a union workhouse, parks, public baths, cemeteries, gas works, the public library (see opposite) and museum gradually took shape in the town and in the satellite communities to which it was increasingly linked by rail (from 1844), horse omnibus (from the 1850s) and tram (from 1898), serving as agencies of both social control and social construction and reflecting the dynamic interplay of forces which ensured a healthier but more hierarchically regulated environment for the expanding urban workforce.
Calderdale history timeline 1810 - 1850AD
From the late eighteenth century, technological innovation in the textile industry led to the proliferation of increasing numbers of water-powered cotton and worsted spinning mills and woollen scribbling (carding) mills together with their dams, goits and sluices - in the tributary valleys of the Calder, and the need for more effective means of transportation resulted in the construction of canals and a network of turnpike roads along the valley bottom which progressively replaced the old hillside packhorse ways. And the plan of the river Calder above.
During this first phase of industrialisation, religious nonconformity underwent a dramatic renewal, reinforcing
the industrial work ethic, and by 1800 both chapel and mill were beginning to make their mark on an increasingly urbanized landscape (see Square chapel opposite). Although there is clear surviving evidence of its pre-industrial origins, the spatial structure of present-day Halifax is very much a product of the complex process of industrialisation, which took place between the mid 18th and late 19th centuries.
In 1750 Halifax was a small but busy market town, with a population of approximately 6,000 inhabitants, served by a network of ancient packhorse causeways. The common fields and waste had long since become a series of dry-stone wall enclosures, and the growing numbers of inns and streets must have given the town something of an urban atmosphere. Most of the population was centred on the small urban nucleus, however, and public buildings, such as the church and manorial moot hall, were still medieval in origin, though almshouses, an orphan hospital, charity schools, a mulcture hall, workhouse and new cloth halls had made their mark on the pre-industrial landscape.
By 1800 the town of Halifax was expanding and the population had increased to almost 9,000. Elegant Georgian mansions such as Clare Hall (1764), Hope Hall (1765) and Somerset House (1766) see opposite, signalled the emergence of a narrow band of upper status mercantile households on the outer perimeter of the central business district, whilst the pre-eminence of Halifax as a cloth marketing centre received its most striking expression in the Piece Hall (1779), which opened as certain aspects of the domestic era were already drawing to a close.
The Town Hall (1863) and Borough Market (1896), which formed a radical two-phase redevelopment of Halifax, provided a vivid expression of the corporate identity of the municipal authority, whilst large Victorian 'country' mansions (Belle Vue, 1857, and Bankfield, 1867) and ornate gothic churches (Square Church, 1857, and All Souls', 1859) boldly proclaimed the wealth and status of the new industrial entrepreneurs who helped to shape the cultural and spiritual values of Victorian society. We have a new Member Joy from Australia who I have been helping with some research so I have decided to add a bit about the areas that her family came from Calstock Cornwall
Calstock Parish has the second largest population in Cornwall and is full of interest. Calstock was mentioned in the Doomsday Book. Back in the 13th Century, it was part of the Earldom of Cornwall, and a huge number of archives dating from that time are housed at the Calstock Parish Archive held in the Tamar Valley Centre, Cemetery Road, Drakewalls, and Gunnislake The parish lies deep in the heart of the Tamar valley, an area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and it contains seven villages and many small hamlets. Many of these are ancient, but some date from the last century when the numerous mining activities caused the population to increase seven-fold. Historical and official documents
referring to “Calstock” usually mean the parish, and not the town, which was named after the parish.
MINING IN CALSTOCK PARISH
There is little evidence in the parish of early tin streaming; the working of alluvial deposits, but it must have taken place. At a later date, outcrops of tin-bearing rock would have been worked and there are examples of lode- back pits, narrow openwork’s and early shafts to be seen at Clitters Wood, probably dating from the eighteenth century. One mine sett which saw all stages of tin production, with records of tin-streaming dating from mediaeval times, through openworks of the sixteenth century, down to true mining in the later eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, was Drake walls mine at the top of Gunnislake Hill; some of the surface remains have been stabilised, with improved public access. Many of the mines in the parish produced some tin and worked actively into the twentieth century; some were examined and/or reworked in the Second World War and there was a flurry of prospecting activity in the early 1970s. Prince of Wales Mine at Harrow barrow is still regarded as 'one of the best prospects in East Cornwall' should the price of tin rise. The most productive period of mining in the parish began in the late eighteenth century when John Williams of Scorrier developed the Gunnislake Sett for copper. The major copper producer for the parish was the Hingston Down Consols with 64,440 tons of ore recorded for the period 1850-1882; little remains to be seen on surface - the engine House at Bailey's Shaft dates from an early and short-lived twentieth century re-working. Surface remains at two other major copper producers, Gunnislake Clitters and Okel Tor, have also been consolidated and had access improved. Following the opening of Devon Great Consols in 1844, on the Devon Bank, several small mines were promoted around Chilsworthy and Latchley in the hope of picking up the western extensions of the lodes; copper was found but none of these mines lived up to expectations.
Now a bit on washday in our mums Days
Monday was the traditional washing day, but in winter the drying from washday could go on all week! Washing involved an early start to get the water hot, and lots of hard work, carrying water to the tub or - if you were lucky - the washing machine.
There was no electricity in many areas of the Lake District until the 1950s and 1960s. Washing day meant lots of hard work. Cold water was piped to the house, but often it had to be ladled by hand into a copper and then heated for the day's wash. Clothes had to be stirred about in the water to remove the dirt, and some items, such as white collars on Sunday shirts, needed scrubbing. Some of the Museum's washing machines have handles, wheels and gears to stir the clothes, but the most basic is just a box with a soap shelf. This was often used to scrub the collars and cuffs of shirts on a washboard to get serious dirt out before the real wash. Then they went into the "poss. tub" or "dolly tub" where clothes were dunked and swirled vigorously with the "posser" or "dolly". Whites, especially white cottons, were boiled, and got a tiny dose of "dolly blue dye to enhance their brilliance. The washed clothes had to be "mangled" to get the water out. This was a hot, steamy job calling for strength to lift the wet, heavy material out of the tub using sprung wooden tongs; and skill to feed enough of the cloth into the rollers for the mangle to get a grip. Then more effort to turn the handle and squeeze the clothes through the rollers. There was a skill in getting just the right pressure on the mangle for the type and volume of material. It also helped if
you did some preliminary folding, because it did save a bit of ironing later. With luck, the weather would be warm and breezy, and clever pegging out on the washing line would use the wind to get rid of more creases as well as drying the clothes. Finally, the washtub or machine had to be emptied by hand. If the weather was too bad to get the clothes out onto the washing line, they hung round the house on clothes horses or on "pulleys" hung from the ceiling over the kitchen stove, getting in everyone's way. Once clothes were almost dry the creases had to be removed, so they were pressed with a series of flat-irons heated on the stove or by the fire; and finally "aired" before being put away until wanted.
A womans work never done
The Weekly Routine
Monday is washing day. It's an all day affair. ... Endless journeys to the pump to get water to fill the dolly tub and the set-pot in the washhouse. The whites (sheets and underwear) are washed in Rinso in the dolly tub, using a poss. stick and dolly legs, and the collars are scrubbed with hard soap on the scrubbing board. Dinner is always cold on Monday - the remains of the Sunday roast - as there's no time to cook.
Tuesday is ironing day, unless it's a hot summer and everything has dried in one day. The main tool is a box iron ... two heart shaped pieces of metal, one of which gets heated in the fire, while the other is in use in the iron. Tuesday is also churning day, and market day in Penrith. ... "Butter churns best when it's cold; it does fine when it's hot, but it takes forever when it's humid" .... What the family gets for the butter and the eggs generally pays for the rest of the groceries.
Wednesday is the day for cleaning the bedrooms, stairs and landings. Floors are swept, sheets changed, everything is dusted and the mats shaken. The women use goose-wing dusters (the long-feathered, bony, almost fleshless wingtips off geese) to get the cobwebs down and for cleaning the bedsprings. Finally they clean the upstairs windows and sweep the yards.
Thursday is baking day. The fire has to be stoked high, as bread and cakes require a hot oven. 18 to 20 white or brown loaves each baking day, pasties, plate cakes, scones, ginger cake, Parkin, rock buns, tea cakes, squares. Dark fruitcakes are usually only made for Christmas and birthdays. Christmas cakes and puddings are made in August to mature.
Friday is clean-up day before the weekend. All the brass, cutlery, and the downstairs windows are cleaned. The flags are scrubbed on hands and knees. The women have to Rudd the step, black lead the grate, emery board the fender and shake the mats. Friday night is the time for a dose of treacle and brimstone (sulphur) for the children - supposed to "keep them regular!" Friday night or Saturday night could be bath night - the tin bath filled with hot water in front of the kitchen fire: girls first, then boys, Mum and Dad last. The water isn't changed but topped up with more kettlefuls of hot water.
Saturday - the children are free of school and can help with chores all the odd jobs are done on Saturday, mending clothes, darning, sewing on buttons; as well as the daily jobs that they do, such as cleaning the glass chimneys on the oil lamps and filling the bases with paraffin oil; feeding the hens, collecting the eggs, chopping the kindling, bringing in coal, black leading the range, polishing the fender. They get eggs and bacon for breakfast on a Saturday, and maybe sausages too; during the week it's "proper oatmeal porridge" that needs to be steeped overnight before cooking; sometimes during the week breakfast is just bread with beef dripping or bread with jam.
Sunday is a day of rest. The family dresses in Sunday best clothes and goes to church. If it's distant, they go by pony and cart but if the family walks to church then they wear rubber galoshes over their shoes, to save muddying good leather. Galoshes are murder to pull on over the shoes as they have to fit tightly. Sunday dinner is a roast of beef, lamb or pork, with a steamed or rice pudding after. Children go to Sunday school in the afternoon and maybe to chapel in the evening. No work is done, no knitting or sewing, and certainly nothing frivolous. In the Kirkby Stephen area a Methodist farmer may still avow that he will not even bring in a bale of hay to save it from the rain on a Sunday.... but he probably expects his wife to provide him with dinner.
Hi and hope you will enjoy the spring issue that we have put together for you Happy reading Vera and Christine
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