Betty Heath: Remembering those wash day blues – Longmont Times-Call

Rubbin’ and scrubbin’ — wash ’em out, ring ’em out, hang ’em on the line wash day blues. Do I ever remember those wash day blues. This coming August marks the 110 year anniversary of the invention of the electric washing machine. Heck, it was almost the newest invention on the market when I was a girl.  I said, almost!

We had the updated 1939 Maytag Model #108 that came complete with attached wringer and two rinse tubs. It sat in the corner of our enclosed back porch and was quite a beauty with its green splattered enamel finish.

Wash day was a major project in those days. My mother would have my brother roll the washing machine out to the middle of the floor and fill the tubs with water while she and I separated the clothes; whites here; lights there; darks over yonder.

We would roll up our pant legs and go barefoot during the process because so much water was sloshed around. Besides, we had a few water fights during the rinsing.

The wringer was often contrary, but it was usually because my ornery brother tried to put too many clothes through it at once. He was always in a hurry to get the wash done wishing he could be somewhere else. After each load was washed he would carry the basket out to the clothes line and it was my job to hang them out to dry. There was certain unwritten etiquette for hanging clothes. Items were hung