I was reminded recently , by a good friend, of how important it is, to write down things our mom spoke of. She was born in 1906 and had a century of stories to share with us, but find I am forgetting them. I hope blogging will jar my memory , order to share her stories with the grandchildren and those of you interested.
Grandma Schultz's Parlor
The parlor was once a sanctuary in a home. It was seldom used, but on that great day it was, anyone misbehaving would be sent to bed and not allowed to return that day. Furniture kept there was usually special pieces, given as wedding gifts, or acquired together at a later time. It was for special occasion use and Grandma Schultz kept the parlor locked all other times. Mom said grandma had an upright piano in the parlor, though she never learned to play, I wonder if perhaps one of the children had been taught. . Also she had a library table with crocheted doilies and high backed sitting chairs. Grandpa Schultz had a special china cupboard made that had a gold filigree insert around the glass front edges and each shelf had doilies to display her beautiful dishes.Sis and I are not sure if this was in the dining room or parlor. but it was also locked as she prized the beautiful glassware and china. On Saturdays, mom would be assigned dusting and said she always admired grandmas fancy dish cupboard, but didn't like having to starch the doilies . When grandmother passed away, aunt Ethel received the china. and several pieces of grandmas dishes were passed on in the family . Also, the parlor had wooden floors covered with rugs...to clean these, mom said that dampened corn meal was used on the carpet and swept off with a brisk broom , or the rugs taken to the clothesline and a rug beater used to remove dirt and dust from the rugs.
Grandpa and Grandma had a pretty settee and she describes a globe lamp that used kerosene, as they had no electricity. They carried candle lamps after dark to see their way down stairs .On Christmas Eve the parlor was opened and a pine tree that had been freshly cut, was brought in , ornamented with real candles and German glass ornaments . It was a special event , to hear mom describe it. . Grandma would light the candles and tell everyone to "hold still" and not go near the pine tree. They sit around the tree and admire it or would sing a song together in celebration..then she would carefully snuff the candles out on the tree. This probably explains why mom used to like waiting close to Christmas to put up a tree...saying our house could catch on fire from the lights.( though no candles for us..LOL)
Children were taught to repect their elders and manners always prevailed when in the parlor. Mom said she never was one to sing on key. How I would love seeing the Schultz family around that Christmas tree!
They had large guild framed photos of the children and also themselves . One was of her as a baby, and presently hangs in a great grand daughter's home( Janine and Pat Scanlon) and I believe the great grandparents photos are with Mark and Andrea Riley.
Mom said they had wood burning stoves for warmth...using cut wood, corn cobs or coal. She said the wall paper would discolor from soot and would have to be cleaned with wall paper clay. (Did you know that Play dough was originally wall paper cleaner?)
Favorite snacks were cakes, fried doughnuts, cookies, sweet breads, and lemonade. Grandpa was said to have some home made Apple Jack from the the apple orchard , though it was not a parlor beverage.
This is all I can recall, but perhaps Helen and Karen will help verify or add on to this. . How I wish I would have written moms stories down at the time she told them. Those days of her childhood were priceless to her. and she loved telling us about the Schultz family homestead.