While on vacation with my family in Long Beach, Washington, I found a clothes wringer on display, proudly proclaiming its use in 1876. The labor-saving machinery intrigued me!
Laundry was a greater challenge– and more work– than most amateur historians comprehend. Even when methods gave way from a washboard to a washing machine, the amount of physical labor required was nothing simple. Manual washing machines didn’t become available until quite late in the frontier era– after the Transcontinental Railroad went through. The washing machine was first available to order through a catalog in the late 1880’s.