Saturday, October 23, 2010

How we lived in the 1940's

    We were talking yesterday Nov 30 2007 about how we lived in the 40's on the farm.  I remember living 5 miles south of Owatonna on a 360 acre farm and how we had to do some of the work.  First off the water pump was at the bottom of a small hill and we had to carry water up the hill for use in the house.  I think my father used to bring a couple of pails of water to the house when he finished milking in the morning.  One probably went into the resevoir  in the wood burning cook stove and the other was used for drinking water.  We  drank water out of the pail but we always used our own cup.

    I think we had a cistern on this farm and we probably pumped water by hand  into the kitchen sink to wash our hands.  We all used a common linen towel to dry our hands.  We did not have any way to drain the water out so we had a slop bucket under the kitchen sink and you had to watch that it didn't overflow.

    When wash day came around in the winter time the water was heated on top of the wood burning stove in a large copper bottomed boiler.  The white clothes were put in to boil and then later the water was dumped into the washing machine to wash the rest of the clothes. By this time my Mother had a washing machine powered by a Briggs and Stratton motor. Some times in the winter the clothes were hung outside to dry.  They would freeze almost dry and then were brought into our dining room and hung up to finish drying.  If I remember correctly my Mother had a iron that was powered by gasoline instead of the old sad irons that you heated on the stove.

    The next farm we lived on which was  about 5 miles from the farm near Owatonna had a cistern under the house.  When it started to rain you would let the water run out of the gutters for a few minutes and then you had a little lever that you pushed and diverted the clean water into the cistern.  I did not live with my folks on this farm as I had finished High School and was on my own about 3 months after they had moved there.

    That was a way of life that is gone now and I thought I had better write it down so that my children and grandchildren would know a little bit more about life when I was young.

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