Sunday, November 27, 2005

Little known implements

Last evening here in Northern Utah, as ol' Myrt ventured out to rescue her son-in-law from a broken-down (albeit newer) car, the delight of the falling snow was immediately overcome by the necessity of removing said snow from the back window of the car. Insufficiently protected by the carport, the last 1/3 of the Pontiac was blanketed by the white stuff, and ol' Myrt needed to do something if she was to drive safely with full vision in the rearview.

What seems commonplace to northerners is lost to this grandma from the south gulf-coast of Florida, who had to use her de-mittened hand to swipe away the half-inch of accumulated cold stuff from the rear window. At the very least, one must take care to brush the snow AWAY from oneself, lest the resulting pileup fall unceremoniously on one's foot, only to become melted and seek entry to one's sneakers via the shoelaces. Taylor later explained that job is better completed by the judicious use of the snow scraper stored in the trunk.

Now what self-respecting Floridian keeps a snow scraper in the trunk?

In fact, to complete this article, I googled for a picture of the required implement, and discovered everything from a hefty hand-held "snow broom" for reaching heavy snows on a car's roof, to a gas-powered "snow blower" for the sidewalks. There are ice-scrapers with broom bristles on the opposite side of the blade, a thoughtful appliance ready to meet whatever icy strands or blowy snows these northern US winters might present.

And of course, ol' Myrt here, is ever thinking about her favorite topic -- GENEALOGY.

And since everything in Myrt's view can be likened to family history, please make note:

-- Very few 21st century wives make their own butter at home, but if your ancestor lived at the turn of the previous century, she would have been quite taken by a dog-powered butter churn as advertised in a circa 1906 Sears Roebuck Catalog.

-- Nary a person under 30 even knows of the traditional use of each year's edition of the Sears Roebuck Catalog -- as "papier de toilette" in the proverbial outhouse.

This entire subject makes ol' Myrt's mind spin, wondering what odd household or farm implement may have descended through YOUR family, whose very purpose may escape all except the most ardent students of history. Drop me a line, and share what you know, so that as discerning family historians, we can keep abreast of everything old (aside from our own wrinkles.)

ALL THE BETTER to understand our ancestors, my dears.Happy family tree climbing!

Myrt :)
6023 26th Street West PMB 352
Bradenton, FL 34207

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