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New-York tribune. (New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, August 13, 1905, Image 17

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83030214/1905-08-13/ed-1/seq-17/

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month. Besides, he was afraid that at the
month's end she would put off her return again.
"?So he brought her back by a resort to the
piwer of curiosity.
"It was his habit to send her all four N??wport
purera. The next batch he forwarded, he cut
carefully out of each a paragraph about three
Inches long.
"waea the lady received in Philadelphia those
four home papers, each with a paragraph
clipped out, she sat down at once and wrote
to ii-r husband, asking him what it was that
had been clipped from them.
"H?- made no reply.
".>he wrote again. She demanded that he send
her the four paptirs in an unmutilated condi?
"**t;Il no rep'y.
"Ho she returnetL She came back post haste.
The power of curiosity had brought her."
Many Are To Be Found in Attics of
Neve-England Farmhouses.
One has only to visit the oldtime attics of
New-England farmhouses to receive ocular proof
of the fact that "the world do move" along the
line of labor saving Inventions and of articles of
general utility. One here gets proof of the fact
that customs change, and if proof w^rc? needed
of the fact that Dame Fashion is a fickle creature
such proof could here be found in abundance. If
one would hark back to the past and find one's
self in an atmosphere reminiscent of days of
long ago, one should visit an old New-England
attic in which the family heirkxima nave been
preserved throughout many g?n?rations There
are many such attics still uninvaded by the
eager search?r for genuine four poster b?-d
steads and "highboys" that bear the sure mark
of real antiquity. There are attics in which
these searchers would "go wiid," but not even
this degree of eager enthusiasm ar?d of longing
could indu.-? the ..'.vriers of these ancient relies
to part with a single one of them. Endeared
and sacred by lifelong associations and by the
touch of vanish?-.! hands, some of these relics
are not to be purchase i with any amount of
money eager buyers may offer for them.
"What! Sell my own great-trrandmother's
four pcister bedstead, that was a part ?if her
wedding setting out and that she slept on sixty
years and that Bbe died on? Why. my grand?
mother and my mother were both born on that
bedstead, and so was I. Sell if Well. I guess
I'll be a good deal poorer than I I?- at the pres?
ent time before I sell it. That bedstead corns to
me by will, and it's going to my daughter by
will along with great-grandmother's silver
There are in the old attics of New-England
many articles of furniture that have been men?
tioned in more than one will. It was not un?
common in the old.-n days to mention every
article of furniture, every household utensil,
down to a single teax-up or spoon, In one's will.
It was the custom to give in such full detail a
list of one's possessions that not e-ven a shoe
buckle or a candlestick was overlooked.
"That warming pan has been in our family
nearly two hundred years," said an old woman,
showing the writer some of her attic treasures.
"It was the custom, you know, to ?ll the pan
with hot coals and pass It between the sheets
of the bed on cold winter nights. And this little
old foot stove came to me from my grandmother.
She carried it to church hundreds of times, and
sat with her feet on it during those long, long
sermons in the unh^ted <-hurch<*s they had in
those days. And you know It was the custom
for the minister to preach all the way from two
to three hours, and nowadays p??ople begin to
yawn and they make complaint if the preacher
holds forth longer than thirty minutes, even in
the beautiful and luxuriously comfortable
churches we have In this day. Think of what
it used to be when folks rode eight or ten miles
to church in the biting cold and then had to alt
in a church like a refrigerator without a sign of
a stove In IL I guess these little foot stoves
came in very handy in those days."
One is sure to find in the old attic the spinning
wheel without which no young woman felt that
ehe could begin her married life in the days of
long ago. Her evenings were spent before it
and her spinning was her "pick up" work
throughout the entire day. The old loom,
clumsy and with tremendous possibilities as a
producer of backache, b??ars silent testimony to
the days when nearly every housewife wove the
cloth for the garments of the entire family. She
wove her own sheets and bedspreads, or "kiver
lids," as they were sometimes called. If she had
a carpet at all it was made of the strips of rags
6he had cut and sewn together with patient
care and then woven into a carpet with her own
hands. Rag carpets are still woven in some
rural homes, but the linen sheets and the blue
and white or bluo frn?i red b??dspreads are woven
no more.
The ?aid churn, an object of loathing to the
boys and girls who had to work Its dasher up
and down, up and down, before the hutter would
come, has had Its usefulness brought to a close
by the modern creamery, and the custom of
buttermaklng has become obsolete in nearly all
farmhouses. The "creamery man." an unheard
of Individual a quarter of a century ago, now
goes his rounds collecting the milk and cream
from the farms, and the rural housewife does
not make even the butter used by her own
Hanging from some dust covered beam in the
attic are the old candle moulds in which the
housewife used to mould h-r candles, if she did
riot make them by the slower process of "dip?
ping" them. What housewife of to-day "dips
taller" or would "dip" it without protest? When
she thinks of her candle (lipping days and of
the flickering, feeble tight h. r candles produced,
when compared to the lamps she has to-day, th?
. ife Is inclined to regara the Standard OH
? ompany as something of a blessing, after aH.
She is also thankful that customs change even
In the matter of diet, and that the farmer who
once lived almost wholly on pork, when It came ta
meat, now uses almost no pork at all. Butcher?
ing day has t>-?eome a thing of the past on many
farms, and lard has almost dis__pp*-ared from
Borne pantries in which it was never absent _B
the days of long ago. The housewife does no*,
fry everything In a sputtering lake of fat as ___(
once did. although there are rural localities t_|
whit h the frying pan still takes first rank as a
cooking utensil, and everything that can bs
fried goes Into it
Lusty old scythes bear testimony to the fact
that time was when the sound of the reaper and
mower was not heard In the land, and the farm
er swung his scythe from morning until night,
cutting less with It In a day than he can now
cut in an hour with the mower of modern inven?
tion. The farmer of to-day owes much to th?
inventive genius of the men of recent years, fo?
his bam is supplied with labor saving imple?
ments of which his ancestors on the farm be
now- owns knew nothing. He may work as hard
as they did. hut he has the satisfaction of know?
lng that his work counts for much more with tha
implements he has at hand.
We are not. like the people of many other
lands, conservative in regard to adopting new
customs and new inventions when we see that
they are bttter than old customs and old inven?
tions. We a_re not bound by custom nor by
sentiment to the ways of our ancestors, although
the writer knows of one old woman living in the
heart of the city of Boston who to-day prepares
all of her meals over the coals In the fireplace
In which her mother and her grandmother
cooked. She will have nothing to do with any
**newfangled" ways of cooking, and that ble___
lng of the housewife of to-day. the beautifully
appointed kitchen range, has no charms for
Modern invention has <_-_ven to the attic many
household utensils once in common and weari?
some use, and custom has wrought such changes
that _f our ancestors who have been lying tn
their graves these hundred years could come
back to earth they would be almost helpless on
a farm or In a kitchen of to-day, while a great,
noisy, odoriferous, touring car of an automobile
would no doubt cause some of them to feel that
some of our modern methods of locomotion are
open to criticism and some of our Inventions are
not unmixed blessings.
Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt was talking about
a young couple whose engagement had just been
announced. The man was a lawyer, with mora
conceit than ability; the girl was pretty, of the
modest, simple minded, humble type,
"They will be very happy," said Mrs. Catt
"Their life after marriage will be an Ideal one,**
"Why do you think so?" a spinster asked in a
sour velee.
"Bec-u-se,** said Mrs. Catt "they are both
deeply interested in the same thing."
"Both deeply interested in the same thlngT
What thing is that?" the spinster cried In?
"Hin-," said Mrs. Catt,

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