Advert For G. R. Worcester, Laundry Works
Printer: Shuttleworth & Bunn
Medium: Print on paper
It is difficult to understand today how much effort went into laundering clothes in the 19th century. Technology has at released us from the tedious and hard work of washing, drying and ironing making the task much faster and easier. In the 19th century the washing process began by soaking the dirty clothes in an alkaline solution to remove stains. Then the clothes were boiled in large coppers, were scrubbed on rubbing boards with soap and then rinsed 2 or 3 times to remove the dirt and soap. The garments then had to be hung out to dry and finally they were ironed, which in the days before electricity took much longer and was actually quite hazardous for the laundress.