Books Read 2020

Saturday, 21 August 2021

Harmsworth's Household Encyclopedia

 

Our weather today is cool and cloudy but only the odd shower is forecast.  I wrote an email to my daughter this morning and am about to have lunch (mushroom soup and toast today).

This afternoon I will probably curl up on my bed and continue browsing through Harmsworth’s Household Encyclopedia!  There are six volumes altogether, and they contain the most fascinating information about domestic life and interests one hundred years ago (the books were published in 1926).




I’ve read how to make my own clothes and household items (patterns included, as scale diagrams), how to keep house, keep a garden, and care for domestic animals.   There are sections on cookery and social etiquette, as well as different hobbies. 

Some things have not changed much over the years, but others are radically different.  This is what the start of the article on washing machines says:

“The main principle adopted in most types of washing machine is essentially the same.  The clothes, together with the washing mixture, generally some variety of soap and hot water, are placed in a closed box or cylinder of wood or metal which is fitted on spindles in the frame of the machine so that it is easily revolved.  The process of washing is accomplished by rapidly turning the cylinder on its axis, either by hand or by electric power.  A reliable machine of this kind will wash clothes as clean or even cleaner than is possible by vigorous hand rubbing, and such fragile materials as lace or net may safely be entrusted to it.”

Sounds a bit different from my automatic washing machine that is so smart it can tell how much water to use and has different wash cycles available for different items!

Have a happy day 😊

Margaret.

 

19 comments:

  1. Just read your comment about your family's missing out on their vaccination, b was booked in over lockdown but he went 2 days later and walked in along with explaining what had happened perhaps your family could do this.

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    1. Thanks Amy, I will pass that information along to them.

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  2. The washing machine principle remains the same - closed box/drum that spins around a centre. It seems we haven't really improved on that, just refined and added bits. Imagine having enough time to consult an encyclopedia when running a busy home without modern appliances. Who had time to write such things? Men? Xxx Mr T

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  3. Supposed to rain here today but, instead, we had sun, although I think I can hear rain now at 7.30pm

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  4. Fascinating book. Lucky you've got plenty of study time now

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  5. Life for our mothers was much harder than the domestic life we had, my mum always had a smile when we were children, she loved to walk in the village each day to the butcher, baker and local shop, she always carried a wicker basket for her shopping. Thank you for giving me this memory.

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  6. Interesting article about the washing machine... same principles, just smarter technology today! Hard to believe that there are six volumes on running a household..
    Stay safe
    Blessings
    Maxine

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  7. Those early washing machines must have seemed like a huge advance on a washboard, however.

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    1. The book also tells you how to make your own washboard!

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  8. Wow, that sounds like a lot, lot, lot of fun!!!!!!

    I see Brownies on one page, and maybe... The proper (and improper) way of placing one's feet, when dancing. -smile-

    An excellent way, to become "lost" in the past, and forget the HORRORS of the World today.

    Gentle hugs...

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  9. I was fortunate enough to have my great-grandparents as well as my grandparents at their farm for my youth. I didn't realize how much I learned about basic housekeeping from them (they weren't very modern, haha) until I got older. I love reading those books, I learn so much.

    I'm glad you had a short-lived reaction to the vaccine, not days long. We had J&J here, and I was the only one to have a reaction, but only my arm.

    We will be skirted by Hurricane Henri tomorrow here, but my mother in New York will get it. I'll bet the generator will be used.

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    1. I hope your mother will be okay. Stay safe Caryn :)

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  10. Your lunch sounds very yummy!
    And the book very interesting! Social etiquette - we seem to get to know about that...
    Our Miele washing machine likely smiled on this post with pride like a kid :-)

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  11. I'm so glad I don't live in the era when one had to be able to do all those domestic things. Or if I did live then I would hope I had a maid or two.

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    1. It is probably why they always seemed to have such large families - lots of free labour! LOL :)

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  12. Reading such a book sounds like a great way to pass a winter day!

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  13. We had a similar book and I gifted it to our daughter:) Hope lockdown is going ok for you! Please keep us informed as what is on the news is sometimes not true:(

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  14. That would be interesting to.pickmup.and read at odd moments.

    I meant to say our daughter is having a slow recovery. Her hubby had Covid, as well as our other daughter, but it did not bother them too bad.but hit Sarah bad..she was sick at home for a week, and then spend a week in the hospital...and has been home a week and two days and still no enery, etc.

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    1. Thanks for that update Rose. I truly hope Sarah will recover completely - tell her to not be afraid of caring for herself as she recovers. I had a bad viral respiratory sickness when I was much younger. It almost killed me and took a good ten years to really get over it. Sending you all hugz, Mxx

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Thank-you for visiting my blog. I truly appreciate it when you leave a comment. Have a great day! Margaret xx