This is an authentic washday ‘receipt” written for a bride in 1900.
(Donna Barlass, Church Cookbook)
- Build a fire in the back yard to heat kettle of rain water.
- Set tubs so smoke won’t blow in eyes if wind is pert.
- Shave one whole cake soap in boiling water.
- Sort things, make three piles: 1 pile white, 1 pile coloured, 1 pile work britches and rags.
- Stir flour in cold water to smooth then thin down with boiling water.
- Rub dirty spots on board, scrub hard. Then boil. Rub coloureds but don’t boil—just rinse and starch.
- Take white things out of kettle with broom stick handle then rinse, blue and starch.
- Spread tea towels on grass.
- Hang old rags on fence.
- Pour rinse water in flower bed.
- Scrub porch with hot soapy water.
- Turn tubs upside down.
Go put on a clean dress—smooth hair with side combs—brew cup of tea—set and rest and rock a spell and count your blessings.