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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Stepping in to the 1930's, Happy New Year!

December 31, 2022


Here we go, 1,2,3,..... Jump!

Hum, that looks different, what happened to the clock?  That doesn't look like our clock.

Why are we already in the New Year?  Oh that's right, we are going around the world starting with Christmas Island / Kiribati.

What happened to our hats?  It looks like we have woken up somewhere in the 1930s.... Humm... What a strange day this is....

What is that on our table?.....  Reading a note.... You have earned the game "Mancala" since you have been doing so much math lately with all the figuring out kilowatt hours, pay scales and what it costs to turn on your stove. Thought you would like to enjoy something more fun this year.  

We did want a new game for the thirties study, this was not a particular game they played during this time, but it was played long before the 1930s.  Well, Tiddley Winks was popular in the 1930s and we have that one too.  

This little table is set up in the parlor/parlour (our livingroom).  Our Children are grown and our Grandchildren are grown now (does that make us double old?) so this would be fun to have around.

We have been doing history studies for many years, I am not sure what our house era looks like at this point other than a mix of long ago and a little bit of today. 

We do like the 1930s look, we have some old and some modern items, 1940s 1950s. The way we do a study is we use what we do have if it has the same purpose for what they had.  A dinner plate may have looked different in the past but what we have today has the same purpose.  

What they did not have we need to try to do without if at all possible. We can pack it away but some things we must keep because of the way communication has been made today.  Charles and I have found many things we did not need and donated the items. 

We only gave the house a touch of the 1930s look for this years study.  The study is about learning about the 1930s and resembling them in what we are doing, not necessarily what they look like.   As I have moved through the house the last several weeks I realize we are already more like the 1930s.  A lot of it has to do with what we remove.

One thing new, we put up the Portiere's (door curtains) and they have been very helpful to stop the cold temperatures from moving around the house. I used fleece blankets.  We finally got out of freezing temperatures the past two days so we can pull back the curtains and I am happy about that.  The curtains have been very helpful directing the heat to where we are in the house by opening and closing the portiere. I am starting to think this might help in the summer as well. 

I am starting my changes in the kitchen to reduce cost, preserve what we have and try to figure out how this generation of people lived through these trying times. Getting routines and keeping what we need in our pantry or food space is important.  We need to use up what we cook and do our best to not have waste.

We purchased a 2 pound block of cheese and I am cutting it into manageable pieces and wrapping them in cheesecloth and then wrapping in butchers paper for the moment but I am still working this out.  They did have parchment paper that was called cookery parchment. I could make some more homemade beeswax cloth, this would be better and reusable. This study makes us think things over, what costs less to do? 

Did you know there was a very big upset in the 1920's when they changed the butchers paper?  The old butchers paper was a heavy brown paper made of straw. It was said that the butchers paper was considered to be bogus manila.  

We live in Alabama and the Alabama Candy Company sold Candies, Cakes, Cigars, Brooms, Notions, Wrapping paper, Butchers paper and Paper Bags.

At the A&P in 1932 Wisconsin cheese was Seventeen cents a pound. 

In our back guest bedroom we have a clothesline that we pull across from one side of the room to the other to hang laundry when I cannot hang laundry outside.  When I have a small amount of washed laundry I use the drying rack, we have used this for many years.  

Since they did not have clothes dryer during the time of our study, we will be saving money by "not" running a clothes dryer.  Going to have to keep an eye on the weather forecast. 

I will be using my treadle machine all year because the electric sewing machine just got stored for the year.  Charles says there will not be enough left over in the budget to run extra electricity. They did start selling electric sewing machines and people did buy some in the 1920s but we would not have had that kind of money.  

 I will do some hand sewing as well.  It looks like I will have to do this kind of work mostly in the evenings unless I can slip in a few morning sewing sessions. 

During the 1930's, the word "Bed Chamber" was used.  It is seen often in the paper when discussing homes or even in the ads where they are renting rooms or houses.  Many people still used this term in the 1930s and some used the more modern term,  "Bedroom".  Sarah says bedroom in her diary, at least at this moment I do not remember her referring to a bed chamber but she could have.  But with much study, it seems that it was commonly still called the bed chamber by what I have researched.  There is a master bed chamber and a guest bed chamber etc.

An ad in the paper for a new bedroom suit was advertised as "A New Beautiful Bed Chamber Suite"

I may have mentioned some of these things before but it is a fun fact for the study.  

The toilet was called the closet and as other items were starting to have the word closet attached the closet (toilet) became the water closet, might have been different in other locations. The change in the  name, the closet became water closet around 1900-1903. The term water closet was still around in the 1930s.  The word toilet was used for many things such as some part of a woman's attire worn at a ball ( 1889), or toilet glass or toilet glass ware, toilet table so this part sounds as it is referring to a room that was called a toilet but what we know as a toilet was a water closet. I feel the older people may have continued with the name, the word toilet was often used in the 1920's with toilet water and during this time it seems the word toilet started taking hold in more modern homes.   So I will say to Charles, I am going to the Closet, he will not know where I am going.  :)  

Since I was born in the middle 1800's for this study comparing to my real age, I probably would have continued with what I knew and said all kinds of fancy words.  Some of the younger generation would have used the changed word in the 1930s but not all of them depending on where one lived. 

A China cabinet would have been a China Closet. 

Okay, now I am going to get a bit excited here.  

The Scullery!  Now many of you may already know this, but I have gone all my life not knowing about the scullery.

Many years ago I saw a picture of a old corner sink area that had a single faucet coming out and a old wooden sink and slots above this sink area to put dishes and it had small wooden drawers and cubby areas and it was very rustic.  I loved that image of that place to wash dishes in the corner of the kitchen.

My mother moved to a new state when my grandparents got older and started having health issues so she could be closer to them.  She purchased this house, it was a turn of the century house, I once thought it was about 1898 but learned it was built in 1903.  There was a small room off of the kitchen that we thought was an old canning kitchen but now I know that it was a scullery because of when it was built and the design.  A scullery is a small room or corner area in the house separate from the main kitchen. This is where the dishes and clean up are done away from the main kitchen. Often the clean up supplies for the house was also kept in the scullery.  

Can you imagine having a small room for washing dishes and the dirty dishes are not seen and the kitchen stays clean?

Some of you may have known about the scullery because you have a older home, or possibly very knowledgeable in historical homes. Possibly being in the military would know this word or one that works in restaurant work.  Since learning about this  I have seen some pictures now of a modern scullery. They are not like the older ones but have the same purpose.  

The image I had of this small vintage scullery was what I am most interested in because I am used to small spaces, there were larger sculleries too depending on the size of the house. 

Before this study is over I just might have to work me in a scullery somewhere in my kitchen even if it is in a itty bitty corner. Maybe where the dryer is that I cannot use for an entire year. One day recently I moved my computer desk out of the corner in the kitchen to see if I could make a scullery but then I could not figure out where to put another blog computer area. So I pushed it all back and down the road maybe I will figure it out.

I want to be able to say, "I shall go to the scullery to wash the dishes dear". I like the idea of keeping the mess out of the kitchen all tucked away.   

Charles and I have been having a lot of fun with these new "Old" words and terms.  Charles has asked for a sleeping cap, this very serious cold spell we have just gone through had us in caps during the night so we did not have to run up the electric bill.  I am going to use an old worn flannel shirt and try and make a sleeping cap for Charles.  That will be a sewing project for my spare time. Do you think we will have any spare time? 

We plan to play Mancala game for New Years Day. We have watched a Youtube how to play the game so we are ready to give it a try. You can play this using an egg carton and beans or rocks.

We cannot start the new year with all the answers about the 1930s, we are starting the new year to find the answers.  All the while trying to live a way to figure out how they did it and hope we will save money.  

I am glad to see many of you heading over to the new forum to talk to one another, for those of you that do not know what a forum is, it is just a comment section similar to what we had down below only there is a section for each post topic and people can post pictures they want to share.  It should get very interesting with all the many topics we have to talk about.  

The forum is found down below this post or up on the top bar of the main page, click where it says forum. Click that and put in the information it asks for, it is only a few questions to keep spammer's out and you safe and me safe. You will find that is where everyone went that was commenting below.   You can also sign up for a mailing list to be notified when I do a new post.  

Happy New 1930's Study Year!  This should be an interesting journey.

Grandma Donna and Grandpa Charles

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