Wednesdays and Fridays were always wash days in my
Grandmother's house. She would be out in the back yard
with the poss tub and huge mangle. It took some muscles
to turn that handle. She used the blue dolly bags to keep
everything white. After they were clean, they were hung on
the clothes line to dry. Long clothes props held the clothes
up from the ground and they would dry in the breeze.
On rainy days the wet clothes would be hung up on the
clothes pulley above the kitchen fire. The house would be
full of steam. if they were left outside on in winter the
clothes would freeze and they would be stiff as a board. My
Grandmother would have to drape them on the fireguard to
melt.After the washing came the ironing. She had two old
flat irons, one to heat up while she was using the other. In
those days there were no electric irons, they had to be
heated up on the coal fire. To find out if they were hot
enough she would lick her finger and touch the hot plate.
There were more clouds of steam from the ironing.
Then the following week it would start all over again.