Saturday, June 22, 2013
Tika Learns About Washing & Bathing In Early Wyoming
A summer ago I spent a delightful couple of hours in the Wyoming State Museum in Cheyenne. This crusty old washtub caught my attention. The plaque reads:
Before indoor plumbing, early-Wyomingians would have taken their baths in tubs like this one. While today we may consider bathing to be relaxing, before indoor plumbing, it was a lot of work just to achieve hot bath water. Water had to be drawn from a source such as a well or a river, heated on a stove or over a fire, and then added to the tub. In the past, bathing was done much less often than today.
This tub would have been a good fit for Tika, or a toddler child, but never an adult! Folks must have used it as a pool to dip their washing rag into. Think of the old cowboy movies you've seen where the dusty fellow comes in from the trail wanting a bath and the scene shows him in a body-full-size tub. Yah, right. Maybe it was so, but just think of the amount of back-breaking work to achieve that tub full of hot water.
"Fine with me," Tika says. "I hate baths!"