Thursday, October 24, 2013

A Bathtub Is Real Luxury, 1927

From the October, 1927, issue of The Bureau Farmer

What She Would Buy With $100, With $1,000

Here is what one Nebraska woman would do if she had from $100 to $1,000 to spend as she pleases—and she might be any one of thousands of farm women all over the country. Home conveniences are her idea of luxury.

“I would call a bathtub a real luxury,” wrote the Nebraska housewife. “You may understand what I mean when I say ‘luxury’, as I am the mother of five children ranging from 2 to 13 years in age. Oh, the awful trial on one’s nerves, going up to the pump on the hill, carrying water down the hill, putting it in the boiler on the kitchen stove, and lifting it down on the floor.

“The water isn’t fit for all of them, so back up the hill I trudge, carrying more water for the wash boiler for more baths.”

Then there is a woman in Maryland discovered by the Rural Engineering specialists of the Bureau of Public Roads, U.S. Department of Agriculture, who walked a distance of 440 miles a year—equal to the distance between Chicago and Omaha—carrying water from the pump to the house. There is yet work to be done in emancipating the American farm wife from her slavery to the water bucket.

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