When visiting the House on Crutches Museum, the first room you enter is the kitchen. Here you will find a replica cooking range and accessories and a display devoted to wash days. There are also replica items of period costume, and you can try some of them on! This room is also home for changing temporary displays or exhibits and items for sale exclusive to and representative of the House on Crutches and Bishop's Castle and district.
The ritual of the weekly wash, undertaken by women, was well established in most households by the 1850s. It was hard work, which took up most of the day, traditionally on Monday. Cotton and linen fabrics were widely available and popular by the late 1700s and early 1800s because of importation of cheap raw cotton from America. They were soaked and boiled in the copper, heated from below by coal or gas, then rubbed and washed by hand. Woollens such as jumpers, cardigans and socks were usually all hand knitted and had to be treated with great care to avoid shrinkage.
We have a number of items available for sale including notelets (packs of 6) bookmarks and the perennially popular fridge magnets. A wide variety of designs are available, and just a small selection are illustrated below.