Editor’s Note: It’s interesting to see that the first place Mr. Morse went was to a gasoline powered vacuum. Also, I don’t know that any dust question has been finally and satisfactorily settled…
At present this method of cleaning is somewhat expensive, and is confined to localities where electric or other power is available. It is to be hoped, however, that vacuum-cleaning apparatus may be devised that can run by cheap gasoline or alcohol motors at a price within the means of the average family. These cleaners, by providing a vacuum, cause suction powerful enough to draw dust, dirt, and other small objects out of the fiber of carpets and hangings and from the surface of woodwork, furniture, and other objects. The dust is taken in through a suitable mouthpiece provided with a handle with which to guide it as desired, and carried, together with a current of air, through a tube into a receptacle containing water. This may afterwards be emptied, and all dust permanently removed from the premises. There is little doubt that some such means of cleaning will eventually take the place of the broom and carpet sweeper in ordinary households, and that thus the dust question will finally and satisfactorily settled.
Editors Note: I wonder how many people actually did this. Also, I like the illustration.
First, shake and brush the articles to remove dust and dirt. Remove rubber dress shields or other pieces of rubber, as they will be spoiled. Tack small articles together and wash larger ones singly in an earthenware jar, filled with gasoline and allow them to soak for an hour or more. If the jar can be put in a pan which is surrounded with hot water (but not on a stove or near any open flame), the gasoline will do its work quicker and better and will be less disagreeable for the hands. After soaking, work the articles about, rubbing carefully between the fingers, or rub the spots with a toothbrush or nailbrush having fairly soft bristles. Or dip the brush into a small can of gasoline set into a pan of hot water. Squeeze the gasoline out of the garments and put them into a second jar, into which pour fresh gasoline, meantime putting other articles to soak in the first jar. A third jar may be used if necessary. After rinsing in the second or third jar squeeze the garments quite dry, stretch carefully to their proper shape, and thoroughly evaporate by airing them on a line.
Editors Note: I realize that this is an early form of dry cleaning, but still. More on this tomorrow!
Cleaning with gasoline should be done preferably out of doors, or if indoors, by daylight, and never in the vicinity of a hot stove, lamp, or other flame. Care must be taken that matches are not accidentally lighted in its vicinity.
Editors Note: Mr. Morse also lists an ironing day, a sewing and mending day, and a sweeping day. I’d guess that body clothing means underclothes?
The custom of this country has established Monday as wash day. Many families, however, prefer Tuesday, in order to have an opportunity on Monday to sort over the different articles, mend tears, remove stains, and the like.
Bed clothing is usually changed on Saturday, and body clothing on Saturday or Sunday, so that all clothes may be readily collected and at hand early Monday morning.
Morse, Sidney. 1909. Household Discoveries: An Encyclopedia of Practical Recipes and Processes. New York, NY: Success Company.