Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wringer washers

We saw these at a store in Shipshewana in 2015....I would have sworn that I posted them.  But have looked and looked and cannot find them.  I wish I had taken note of the price of these.  They were used and the price was high...or at least I thought so.  I think one of them was a bit over $1600 and the other was even higher.

Someone posted a pic of one on Facebook the other day, a bit different to these.  When I grew up we used one most of the time.  I was in school before mom ever got an automatic washer and dryer.  and even after she got them, we almost always used the wringer and hung the clothes outside.

Ours had the red release...like the one on the left.  If you were to catch your hand in the wringer, the idea was the push the red release....but I never knew anyone to get caught.  But many is the times my mom told me to be careful when she let me feed the clothes through.  Every now and then for some reason, I can remember having to press the release to get something 'untangled.'

We had a pantry, I guess you would call it....we didn't call that though.  It had shelves at one end for the jellies mom made and for canned goods, and under the bottom shelf was this big tin can that mom kept sugar in.  A big chest stood on the other side...and in the middle we kept the wringer washer.  We didn't have a clothes hamper...we just threw our dirty clothes on top of the washer.  We never threw anything wet on the clothes...if it was wet, we hung it on a line to dry rather than pile it with the others and get them damp.

We never had a certain day to wash that I remember.  When we washed, we just rolled the washer over to the sink.  We had a short hose that we could screw on to the faucet...and then ran it over to the washer and filled it with hot water.  Then add the detergent.  Mom placed a regular dining chair on the back side...behind the wringers.

We didn't have clothes baskets.  We had metal dishpans...similar to the following.

At least one was sort of shiny like this and one was a bit deeper and was aluminum.  I know we had two, and maybe a third one.  And I  know when we first washed clothes they were piled in them..rounded up.  But I still can't see three being enough, but for the life of me I cannot remember using anything else. We would always have to run the clothes through the wringer and guide them down and make sure they go in the pan.  (When I was real young, that was my job.)

We started out washing sheets and towels, followed by underwear....next came shirts and dresses, and that was followed by jeans.  I don't remember how we did if we had a quilts or blankets to wash.  They would have been either before or after the jeans.

Mom always had a different pan with bleach water in it,  had lye soap on hand, and a washboard and used it for tough stains.  I can only remember having to use it a time or two.  But mom always used it on some things.

After everything was washed, we ran that water out into the sink, and rinsed the tub out.  We re-filled the tub and proceeded to run the clothes through the rinse water.  Now this time, soon as we got a load ran through and put the next load in, we took the clothes we just ran through outside and hung on the line.  When little, my job was to hand the clothes up to mom.  In the order that she wanted them.

By the time we were done with a load, it was about time to run the next load through the wringers and put in another load and start the process over.

I remember gathering the end of the sheets in my hands to start them through the wringers, and I remember trying to fold the shirts or anything with buttons till the buttons were to the inside.  But I don't know if mom did that or if that was just something I did.  I enjoyed laundry then, and I do now.

Though I am thankful that I don't have to use a wringer washer all the time,  I sure wish I had one.  They would save so much water. 
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