About gDonna
The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....

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Days of the week

July 8, 2024

We continue the study of 1940 and are trying to live like this year of 1940 as best we can considering it is the year of 2024.  

When we start a history study, we slowly change our home, shift things around, remove what they would not have had in the year we are studying and this year is 1940.   

We try to make our studies fun as we go and we lean to the good parts of this time in history as far as our home life.  As the studies move along, we do learn of things we do not like but we do not have to bring that into our home. 

Going to the movies was a very popular thing to do since there was no television in many if not most parts of the country. People did have radio and newspaper.   In 1940 the average cost of a movie ticket was twenty five cents.  Looks like for July the movie Babes in Arms with Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland would be one we would choose.  However, Charles and I are an older couple and it would be on rare occasion we would go see a movie.   Maybe if the Grandchildren talked us into going, I can smell the popcorn now.

Last week I wrote about the catalogs during 1940 and I wrote about clothing and what items people would have worn.  It was common for men to wear a union suit for underwear.  Charles one piece union suit arrived last week and he said that it is surprisingly comfortable.  Now when he gets dressed and tucks his shirt in his dress pants, he says that there is less fumbling with the shirt  because there is no undershirt.  He like these and nobody but me and you all know that he is wearing them. Lol 

We were surprised that they still sell summer union suits, they are all cotton. I found these on amazon.  We have ordered him another like this one and one with short sleeves to try.  Seems he is a bit cooler wearing these with this  90 degrees to triple digit hot weather we have been having.  We are not dressing 1940's we were just curious about summer union suits.  Many people today wear winter union suits also known as long johns. 

Below is a little sniped of 1940 manners question.

The second question #2, Need a call of condolence be returned?, during 1940 this would have been an in person call/visit, not a telephone call.  People frequently called in person, to friends, family and neighbors frequently. They also called on people to express sympathy or illness.  

Number 3, I personally can remember when we would go on a long trip to visit family, their neighbors would stop in for a "call" to have a short visit with us. This gives us a glimpse of how well the community knew one another. 

There were telephones and had been for quite some time but many people still did not have service if they were rural, others simply could not afford them.  1940 was a bit of an in between time so nothing much was thought about it if someone did not have a telephone. Either way visitors would commonly call without notice.  However this too was done in a proper way and the visitors should not stay for a long period of time.   In the series Cranford there was mention that the visit should not go over fifteen minutes. I do not know if this was still the same in 1940. 

The Visiting Card goes far back in time, I do not know how far back but I have read the 16th century. In 1940 it was still proper to leave a visiting card, also known as a calling card.  However, this is a very confusing subject because depending on the era there were all kinds of rules how to use the visiting card, especially the Victorian era. The article below is from 1940 and so we can see that it is still proper to use a visiting card and still needs to be done properly.  In some of my diaries it is mentioned when someone left their visiting/calling card. 


So as you see, this continues to be something proper to do in 1940.  

This week I am starting the proper household days of the week.

As I am typing this, today is Monday and this is wash day.  So I washed the laundry today.

Tomorrow being Tuesday, I will iron the clothes.  I iron every week because Charles wears dress shirts and pants to work and I wash, dry and iron all of his clothing.  In the past, handkerchiefs, some linens such as pillowcases, the tops of the bed sheets and long ago all of the bed sheets.  

This household days of week have been around for a long time. Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday were different during different era's.   Such as Thursday used to be "Clean the upstairs" instead of shopping.  That would not work for me since I have a one story house.  There were different chores put in the towels depending on what worked for the keeper of the home.

Even Friday and Saturday had other activities but as far as I can tell that most popular was cleaning on Friday and Saturday was baking day.  Even in Sarah's 1932 diary, her baking day was Saturday.  

I still do my one room proper which is I have assigned rooms in my house that get a deeper cleaning on certain days.  But Washing, Ironing, Mending and so on I will keep to this throughout the study.

Now you may be thinking, that washing on Monday will not do for me!  This is just the main washing such as sheets  and towels after the weekend and such as that.  In the past the underclothing was hand washed throughout the week and of course anything that needed to be washed would be washed when needed.

However, it was quite a chore to wash, to get the water to the machine if you had one or get the laundry to the laundromat which was even more popular during this time because many people did not have a washing machine.  If they did it was a wringer washer and the laundry was hung outside to dry or inside if needed.

We had a discussion with Madge a few years ago about her childhood memory of going with her mother to the washeteria and how her sister had her hand and arm caught in the wringer and injured her very badly.  At the washeteria, they had wringer washers lined up and laundry tubs and a place to get water to the wringer washer and tubs to rinse. Then they took the wet clothes home and hung them on the line to dry. This was the way they washed the laundry even into the end of the 1940's. 

In another study I was shocked to find that far back in history laundry was sent out to be washed because people did not have washers and men on wagons would come and pick up the laundry and bring it back.  As time moved forward, these wash companies offered drying the laundry.  Still we have to consider the era it was and the machinery they had or did not have.

So we are learning each week and this week we will hopefully be getting our routine going on the days of the week.  I will be hand washing under clothing and most likely will need to add in another wash day.  

I encourage you to learn to embroidery if you do not do this already.  A good project would be to embroidery the days of the week on tea towels, there are some cute patterns that you can find on the internet or hand draw them from these pictured above and then embroidery over them. There are iron on transfers sold today that you can embroidery tea towels. I enjoy  free hand drawing on the cloth and embroider over that.  This would also be a nice thing to add to a gift cubby. 

I hope you are enjoying the study, what are you working on at your house and what do you like to make for gifts?  Comment or send photos in the forum, it is fun to see what others are doing.  

Grandma Donna 

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