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Things Worth Knowing, 1911 (2)

By: Ardis E. Parshall - August 05, 2011

More practical hints for everyday problems (real, imagined, antique, and even some still existing) from the pages of the Young Woman’s Journal:

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Coughing can be quickly relieved by mixing barley water with honey and the juice of a lemon and drinking it warm.

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Cut flowers will last twice as long if they are sprinkled with salt and the stems placed in salt water daily renewed.

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A half teaspoonful of salt in half glass of water will cure heart-burn, sour stomach and hiccoughs.

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A warm solution of warm salt and water is splendid for tired eyes.

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Nothing is more refreshing and strengthening than bathing in salt water, hot or cold. If you cannot reach a seaside resort, put a teacup of salt in your bathing water night or morning or both, and note the good effect. Weak infants and children are often thus made strong and healthy.

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In caring for the eyes avoid sudden changes from dark to light.

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Avoid reading when lying down or on a moving car, or when mentally or physically exhausted.

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Pay special attention to the hygiene of the body; that which tends to promote the general health acts beneficially upon the eyes.

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Old persons should avoid reading much by artificial light. Do not sit up too late at night.

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Always go to a good eye specialist when selecting spectacles.

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When the eyes feel tired rest them by looking at objects a long distance off.

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Avoid the use of stimulants and drugs which affect the nervous system.

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A large income can be wasted with surprising rapidity by the continuance of little leaks that seem insignificant. A partial list of some little wastes are: Buying articles because they are cheap and will come in some time; pieces of ribbon and lace thrown away; making the sewing woman wait in the house idle or doing unnecessary work, because you neglected to get materials before her arrival; allowing whalebones to rub through the waist, thereby ruining an elegant gown; too much starch made and thrown away; dish towels used for holders; sheets used for ironing tables; napkins used for dish towels; cold potatoes allowed to sour; cheese permitted to mold; lemons left to dry; canned goods left exposed in cans; bread pan and board left with dough sticking to them; silver spoons and forks used in the kitchen; pieces of bread and cake left to dry and mold, then thrown away; carpet brooms used to scrub with; street and party dresses worn in the kitchen; preserves opened, forgotten and left to sour or mold; soap left in the dish pan to dissolve and waste; spices exposed in the air; bits of meat and fish thrown away; the kerosene can left open to evaporate; tin dishes improperly dried when washed; left over vegetables thrown away; the cogs of the Dover egg beater allowed to get wet; sour milk thrown away; corks left out of vinegar and molasses jugs; leaving a silk umbrella in the case, causing it to split in the folds; leaving dried fruit exposed, thereby becoming wormy.

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A lump of sugar saturated with vinegar will often cure hiccoughs.

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Lard applied at once will remove the discoloration of a bruise.

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Wet tobacco is good for bee and wasp stings.

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A poultice of scraped potato relieves burns and scalds.

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A cork full of thumb tacks kept in the work basket will be found invaluable when cutting out garments to hold the patterns and not wrinkle the goods.

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For mending table linen save the long threads that have been drawn from linen in hem stitching, wind on a spool and put aside until wanted.

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To make croutons for soup quickly, cut the bread into cubes, put in a corn popper, shake over the fire as for popping corn, and they will soon brown.

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Keep a bottle of ammonia handy to use when acid takes the color from any fabric. Apply a little of the ammonia and in almost every instance the color will be restored.

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Instead of putting food in the oven to keep hot for late comers, cover it closely and place over a pan of hot water. The steam will keep the food hot, and prevent drying.

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Turpentine when applied to burns gives instant relief. Turpentine is also good for blisters on the hands, and prevents soreness.

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If your Oxford shoes slip up and down at the heel glue a piece of velvet in the heel of the shoe, about two inches by three, and you will find no more holes in your hose.

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An easy way to keep fruit jars from breaking when canning, is to place a silver knife or spoon in the jar, and then fill with the boiling fruit. If the jars are perfect they will never break.

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Cider vinegar is best for salads.

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A glass of milk to which has been added a raw egg, well beaten, a little sugar and nutmeg, will remove physical exhaustion in hot weather.

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To relieve tired feeling that comes in hot weather, take a pint of bran, pour over it three pints of water. Let stand in refrigerator over night, then pour off water, and drink a glassful two or three times a day.

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If sandwiches are prepared beforehand for luncheon, pile them on a plate, and wrap plate and all in waxed paper. They will be just as moist as when first made.

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Oxalic acid and water, one to twenty parts, will remove perspiration stains.

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Take a number of stoned cherries, insert a peanut or walnut in each, pile on lettuce leaves and cover with salad dressing. This makes a delicious and attractive salad.

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To remove grease from garments, dissolve a tablespoonful of salt in four tablespoonfuls of alcohol, shake it well, and apply with a sponge or cloth. Lay brown paper or turkish towel under grease spot.

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Salt will curdle new milk, therefore, in preparing milk gravies, porridge, etc., add the salt after the dish is prepared.

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House plants intended for winter blooming should not be allowed to flower in summer.



11 Comments »

  1. I don’t care how hot it is — drinking a raw egg in milk?!

    Comment by E. Wallace — August 5, 2011 @ 7:07 am

  2. Eggnog! It’s how we (my mother, at least) used to make it, before everybody learned to be so afraid of raw eggs.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 5, 2011 @ 7:48 am

  3. What is a turkish towel? BTW Break a leg, or whatever you say to someone speaking in public, tonight Ardis! Wish I could be there.

    Comment by Cliff — August 5, 2011 @ 10:30 am

  4. Generally, it’s a towel like the ones you’re familiar with — terry cloth. At the time this advice was written, the usual towels were woven (huck towels or crash cloth). They were absorbent because they were linen or cotton, but they were thin and rough in comparison to the thick, soft terry cloth we generally use now. (I collect antique textiles and have a few high-end old towels that women put in their hope chests and never used. They *look* nicer than terry, but man, I’d rather use a terry towel any day.)

    Thanks for the good wishes for tonight, Cliff. As much as I’m normally an exhibitionist and a ham, I’m starting to get stage fright for this one.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — August 5, 2011 @ 11:42 am

  5. Starting to get stage fright? You’ll do great!

    And, so my comment isn’t entirely a thread jack, I’ll say something about this post. : )

    Cider vinegar is best for salads? Isn’t it a little strong for that? I like to use it in pulled pork, and for fruit fly traps.

    Comment by Researcher — August 5, 2011 @ 12:07 pm

  6. “A glass of milk to which has been added a raw egg, well beaten, a little sugar and nutmeg, will remove physical exhaustion in hot weather.”

    I didn’t think eggnog; I thought Napoleon Dynamite (working at the chicken farm).

    Comment by Paul — August 5, 2011 @ 1:42 pm

  7. Salt in almost everything. At least four out of the first five. And just how am I expected to prevent my plants from flowering in the summer?

    Comment by Bruce Crow — August 5, 2011 @ 2:05 pm

  8. “Avoid reading when lying down or on a moving car, or when mentally or physically exhausted.”

    You might as well just kill me now, then.

    Also . . . I have this great image of a girl applying all these various things at one time.

    Comment by SilverRain — August 5, 2011 @ 2:43 pm

  9. This summer I’ve been ripping out an old deck behind my house, and after a hot bruising day, I should slather my bruises in lard, drink barley water followed by milk with a raw egg to revive myself, throw salt water in my tired eyes that have been strained by going from the dark basement to the bright sunlight. With me so far? Then I need to pour turpentine over the burn I got from the chain saw that I used to cut up the four by four posts. Or was that a potato poultice?

    Yeah, I don’t think my wife is going to let me sit down at the table like that to eat my salad of pitted cherries with walnuts in them, and cider vinegar dressing, until I’ve taken a bath in salt water.

    Life must have been a lot harder in 1911. This makes me want to go lay down and read while resting.

    I’ll echo the good wishes for tonight. I’d love to be there. I think you’ll do great.

    Comment by kevinf — August 5, 2011 @ 4:41 pm

  10. I can vouch for the barley tea. We used to drink the Japanese version (mugicha) chilled on hot days on the mission and it was always instantly refreshing. You had to get used to the taste, but it certainly did the trick.

    Comment by Chad Too — August 5, 2011 @ 10:31 pm

  11. Hey, I drank eggnog that way for breakfast when I was a teen. I don’t like plain milk and I don’t like eating breakfast, so an eggnog and a slice of cinnamon toast was my usual fair.

    I’m also really in trouble: When is it possible to just sit down and read without lying down, or being mentally or physically exhausted, or by staying up too late at night reading by artificial light.

    Comment by Maurine Ward — August 5, 2011 @ 11:37 pm

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