Tuesday, June 29, 2010

In the World the Founding Fathers Knew.......

I received a really neat book for Christmas two years ago and I really like reading it in small dosages whenever the urge hits me. The book is titled House of the Founding Fathers. It's really an interesting book full of great pictures of old historic homes and the history behind them. I highly recommend reading this book. Anyway on to the facts:

The average child had a roughly 50% chance of surviving to adulthood.

Slavery was legal in all thirteen states.

All the cooking was done in or around the fireplace.

Men and women were not created equal. Women could not vote or hold public office. And unless widowed could not own property in most colonies.

Travel was slow and uncertain. By water ships relied upon the wind for locomotion. By land a rider might hope to cover thirty miles in a day, the passenger in a coach just twenty miles.

Aside from sunlight the sole source of heat was fire, usually in an open fireplace. After sunset, illumination was either by moonlight or candlelight.

There was no indoor plumbing. The flush toilet, the bathroom, and the kitchen faucet would be nineteenth century innovations meaning chamber pots, outhouses, and buckets were a way of life.

Privacy was a rare privilege for most: people, including children at home and strangers at inns routinely shared beds.

Aside from a minority of city dwellers everybody was a farmer.

There was no anesthesia for surgery or childbirth.

Every household produced some, and in many cases all, of the candles, soap, foodstuffs, and clothing it required.

The medieval notion of the four humors still dominated medical theory, so bloodletting and purging were employed to restore the balance of black and yellow bile, blood and phlegm, and thus, presumably, good health.

Life, in short, was hard in the time of the Founding Fathers.

1 comment:

Megan said...

Ooooo, I want this book. I want about every other book you have mentioned, too! My list of "Books I want" is growing and growing and growing......