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History of Mosborough - David English


Domestic Change

At the beginning of the century all heating and cooking was by coal fire. Later on in the 1930's the kitchen ranges became more efficient and just before the first World War gas fires and cookers came into use. Electric light very slowly took over from gas but the electricity was only 30 cycles per second as it came from Staveley Works. As the time of the second World War

approached rather crude vacuum cleaners appeared. Most lavatories were still outside "middens" and a bathroom was a rarity. ,

Washday was a nightmare, clothes boiled in the copper, wringing out by the "mangle" (hand turned of course) Starched and hung out to dry or on the "clothes horse" by the fire then damped folded and ironed.

Then came the second World War, rationing of all types of food, even after the war (bread did not come off rationing until 1954). Slowly home conditions improved with washing machines, refrigerators, food mixers, freezers, hair dryers and many other labour saving devices made possible by good electricity supplies. Good gas supplies made possible efficient central heating systems and good hot water supply. Flush toilets soon replaced the old outside toilets and some houses had a telephone - today they are on the Internet. The early 1920's saw the wireless (now called "radio") appear and around the 1950's, the first television (black and white) came into use.

Today T.V. Video's, and radio cassettes are the prime centre of attention and amusement in most homes. Also personal computers and the "internet".

Most families own cars and in many cases caravans as well. The choice of food is much more varied although we of the older generation still cling to the "meat and two veg" dinners of our younger days in place of the modem "fast food" tendency.

The poor old housewife of 1900 had no washing machine, no vacuum cleaner, no constant supply of heat or hot water when required, no electric iron, no electric kettle, no automatic cooker, no bathroom - the list is endless and still we have a grumble!