Where’s the Spin Cycle?

Melissa SandfortAgricultural Anthropology

I love doing laundry. That involves separating whites and darks, walking down the hall, throwing it in the washer and going back to doing something else for 50 minutes while it washes; tossing it in the dryer and folding it. Total time = 1.5 hours.

I have it easy.

This is an old double-faced wash board that belonged to my Grandpa’s mother. Back in the day, these cost anywhere from 16 to 25 cents each, depending on the model. To get a load of laundry “going”, she would have to go outside and pump the water into a pail by hand, carry it in the house, heat up the boiler on the stove, heat the water, and fill another tub for rinsing. Wash the clothes by hand, ring them out, then take them outside to dry on the clothesline. There was no Tide or Downy, only hand-made lye soap. But boy did it get things white.

Total time? I’m guessing at least 3 hours, and they were busy ONLY washing clothes that entire time.

Thank you Maytag.

Until our next history lesson …