I now work on Thursday at the Castle Museum doing about poverty before the first world war because on the work of the second son of Joseph Rowntree who went to all around the posh houses and to the shops he wrote a report on provery in York to show the MPs in London that it was not just in London it was all over the country and it was not down to people being lazy it was down to low wages.

The rag rug which is one of the things that I talk about is over a hundred years old and is made up with pieces of old clothing such as dresses and men’s trousers.

It was made by cutting up the pieces of clothing by the men and children in the evening after tea once this was done the lady of the house would, using a peace of broken peg, poke the piece of clothing through the piece of sack that was used to make it. The rug has many names such as clippy mat and a peg rug.

One of the other things that I talk about is the washboard that was used on a washday which was on a Monday, which started very early in the morning. When the sun came up once the basin was lit the washboard was put in the water and for the rest of the day the women would stand scrubbing clothes to get rid of the dirt. The washboard that I talk about is made of glass since it would last a lot longer than one that is made of metal, which would have rusted after a long period of time being in water. We at the Castle Museum think that the ladies on one street would have saved up money together to buy the washboard since it would have been very expensive for one woman to buy her own.


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