State Library of South Australia
Manning Index of South Australian History
  • South Australia
  • Adelaide
  • Port Adelaide
  • Place Names

  • About the Index
  • Searching
  • Text-based menus
    (Use this option if your browser will not open the folders.)

    Adelaide - Housing, Architecture and Ancillary Matters

    Domestic Matters

    For articles on various tradesmen such as plumbers, etc., see Trades and Occupations.
    Also see:
    Adelaide - Suburbs
    South Australia - Social Matters - Domestic Servants.

    Domestic Life

    (Taken from Geoffrey H. Manning's A Colonial Experience)

    Personal Memories of 1839

    Sometimes, for the want of something better to pass away the time, I have entertained a few of the present generation by telling them tales of the early days and, by sticking to the facts, I pointed out that life in those days was not all beer and skittles - a phrase much more common then than now.

    I might begin by saying that in July 1839 there was to be an important meeting, but no lighting oil was to be found in Adelaide. Thus, this meeting was postponed sine die. Now let me explain my mother's plans of overcoming this problem within our household. She told me and my sister to gather from under the gum trees a quantity of the thinnest bark and to stack it near our fireplace. Then, when all became dark, she posted me near to the fire to throw small pieces of the bark upon it from time to time. This gave a good light over the whole room and enabled those who desired to read to do so with comparative comfort.

    Stewed parrot was the best meat and the flesh from those which fed on the honey of flowers was much tenderer than those which fed solely on seeds. At one time bread was too expensive and beyond our family's means, but we did not starve. The substitutes were ship's biscuits, rice and split peas. For breakfast a quart of skimmed milk from the South Australian Company's farm, at a price of one shilling, was taken and consumed with the rice.

    I cannot remember having tea, but we had coffee and I have many recollections of our coffee mill that was put to diverse use, one of which was the grinding of rice and other grains, such as sorghum which my father grew. From it my mother made excellent 'Johnny cakes' out of the meal. Skittles barley was experimented with, but had to be given up for fear of damaging the mill and also because the noise startled the natives in their wurleys. My mother's method of cooking this delicacy was an improvement upon that usually adopted. She had brought out a good-sized piece of half-inch flat iron, which was part of a broken stove. She put this on two logs and placed the cake mixture on it, thus keeping them clean. Nevertheless, I had very good cakes cooked upon the fire itself and felt thankful for them. There was a good old saying in those days - 'To the hungry, the bitter is sweet.' In speaking of our food I must say that during the first year no small quantity was obtained from the waterholes in the River Torrens, in the shape of crayfish with which it abounded.

    Domestic Life in Early Adelaide

    As a colonial housewife I was expected to administer first aid, tend the family garden and poultry and exterminate household pests and to this end the local press was only too willing to provide assistance, eg:

    Cooking was conducted over open fireplaces but, occasionally, a Sunday treat was arranged in the form of roast meat cooked at the local bakery; alas, this unsubtle form of Sabbath breaking was frowned upon by some of the stricter religious sects:

    The heat of domestic open fires dictated that cooking utensils be provided with long handles and makeshift systems of pulleys helped lower them on to the flames; the housewife also made hand protectors (oven mittens) to ward of the heat emanating from the fire.

    Unlike today there were but few labour-saving devices and cooking aids in early colonial households. However, in 1849, Mr Roberts, a former engineer with the Yatala Smelting Works, invented a cooking apparatus whereby 'the processes of baking, roasting and boiling [were] accomplished to admiration; and these are not all, for, while the laundress is heating her flatirons on the hotplate, she may be roasting some potatoes for supper in the ash-pan below... The fuel [was] coal, charcoal or wood.'

    Later, Mr Drury, an employee of Mr Nettlebeck in Gawler Place, invented a gas fire which could 'be used as an ordinary grate' and boasted that, if used, the housewife would 'never have the bother of wet wood or smoky chimneys.'

    A Star Washing Machine was exhibited in 1879 and the proud inventor's boast was that 'the clothes do not have to bear the severe friction which is the fault of most machines... it is durable and can be worked with ease... clothing of an ordinary family can be washed in an hour-and-a-half.'

    By the 1860s the manufacturing firm of A.M. Simpson & Son was well established and provided South Australian households with ovens. However, while making cooking easier they also created work as they required regular coats of black lead, while the flue needed a weekly cleaning out with soda and water; if cracks appeared and soot and smoke appeared they were subjected to a remedial coat of moist ash and salt. The judging of temperatures for cooking was an art which came with experience and ingenuity - one method was to place some flour on a dish in the oven and, dependent on its colour upon removal, the cook would have an approximation on the heat of the fire.

    At the back of all stoves was a cast-iron pot in which all water remaining after the cooking of vegetables would be poured and retained as stock for future soups and stews. Its neighbour would be a large black 'fountain' complete with a tap to provide hot water at all times.

    The chore of ironing clothes was carried out by various types of flat instruments the most common of which were either heated on stoves or in the fire itself; to prevent the soiling of clothes from smut the irons were treated with beeswax. Box irons were equipped with receptacles in which were placed red hot coals and if they started to cool the operator gave it an energetic swing to regenerate the coals.

    Today, depreciative remarks to the laundress are heard frequently - How is it that washing is so often a failure? This may be accounted for by the fact that the ironing is not always first rate. Even if the washing is done at home the ironing part of the business is often not a success. Very few people understand the art of ironing, for it is an art, though not recognised as one. Girls are taught to play the piano, sing, paint, dance and all kinds of ologies; but give a girl a shirt to iron and see what use all her learnings are to her - 'Able to do anything from the kitchen upwards' should be the woman's motto.

    In the first place for ironing, a spotless deal table or ironing board is a thing which could not be done without. On this is laid an equally spotless blanket, which is covered in its turn by a moderately fine sheet. It seems needless to mention iron-stands, padded holders and a basin containing clean water for sprinkling. But a thing which is very likely to be forgotten is a board covered with finely powdered bath brick, on which to rub the irons, and dusters to polish them after the said rubbing. Another essential is a perfectly clear fire. If no proper flat-iron stove is provided the irons can be hung on a bar in front of an ordinary fire. If the fire wants making-up during the ironing process the red hot coals should be raked from the back to the front of the grate, new coals being added at the back - never in front - as the irons are then liable to become smoky.

    At least three flatirons should be provided for each ironer, an Italian one for frills and a box one for cuffs, collars, laces and muslin. If less are provided the irons do not have time to get properly hot in the interval between the times when they are being used. The ironing will be certain to be a failure if only warm irons are used. Goffering irons are also needed, but these must not be too hot, or the frills will be cut and after two or three washings will be in threads. For shirt fronts and embroidered chemise and nightdress fronts a board about 20 inches long by 10 inches wide, covered with flannel, should be used to slip under a part while it is being ironed; a long, narrow one, covered in the same way, being used for sleeves.

    The first form of lighting was 'slush lamps' made from the fat from animals which was readily available from the slaughtering yards on the park lands; primitive candles were home made from tallow mixed with beeswax, or lard with alum; an alternative was to melt the surplus fat from the 'family joint' into moulds made for the purpose by the 'pioneer tinsmith of Hindley Street, which then constituted Adelaide proper'.

    Until the 1840s the safety match was unknown thus adding to the importance of keeping a fire alive. Kerosene was discovered in 1850 and in ensuing years a variety of model lamps became available.

    Food such as flour, rolled oats and sugar was packed in calico, jute or hessian bags and innovative housewives utilised them in many ways. The larger bags made excellent pillow slips, while others were used for hanging salted meat; the finer-textured were made into children's clothing and domestic rugs.

    By 1846 the prevalence of smoky chimneys was a frequent subject of local debate, but truth compels me to concur in the opinion that the vituperation showered upon the heads of luckless architects or builders should have been thrown upon the housekeepers, principal or deputed, who neglected to order the periodical visitations of the chimney sweep. At this time Mr George Barnet of Light Square 'informed the gentry of the city and environs' that he had succeeded in manufacturing a sweeping machine 'warranted to cleanse the foulest and most intricate chimney.' The machine was similar to the one intended to supersede the necessity of the unfortunate class of 'climbing' boys and a local report praised the new gadget and claimed 'that it [was] diligently employed in the maintenance of an industrious family.'

    Alas, by 1853 Mr Barnet had disappeared, presumably to the gold fields, and the careful housewife had often to mourn over a spoiled dinner, while a thoughtful spouse digested as best as he could his sorry meal and ran over in his mind the value of his household goods, to satisfy himself that they were covered by his insurance policy. At this time I applied for a sweeper to clean my chimneys at Norwood and he had the effrontery to ask me for three guineas - an amount which would have insured our house and furniture for £600.

    Fires in chimneys were common in those far off days and one evening upon stepping outside I observed flashes of flame from a chimney of a nearby residence. I called my husband and he rushed to the house, occupied by a maiden lady, closed every door and window and he placed a tarpaulin before the open chimney, some eight feet wide. This reduced the violence of the emission and, wishing to stop the fall of fire flakes, he took a ladder and placed it on the chimney and put a wet wool sheet over the mouth of the chimney on fire.

    In the 1860s it was suggested that the Adelaide council should engage a chimney sweep whose services, on the payment of a fee, could be demanded by any citizen. At this time there were parts of the city where a regular chimney sweep had not been within the memory of the oldest inhabitant and 'a vast number of fire fearing citizens were altogether ignorant of the whereabouts of "the black, but comely individual".'

    In 1864, the soot in the chimney of a home in Norwood caught fire and the tenant used great exertions, particularly by discharging a gun into the burning soot, but the fire was not extinguished until the chimney had been cleansed thoroughly. At times the sparks fell in showers and caused considerable apprehension for the safety of the house, but fortunately the slate roof resisted the ordeal.

    The first day of May was 'All Sweeps' Day' and, in 1890, two sweeps perambulated the city streets after the custom of their calling in England. One appeared as 'Jack in the Green' which consisted of a garland formed by of holly and ivy framed upon hoops, shaped like an extinguisher and crowned with a broom. Inside was 'Jack', who walked almost wholly unseen. The garland, which appeared like a moving hillock of evergreens, was supported by a couple of young men, whose duty apparently was to guard 'Jack' from being handled roughly and to guide him about the streets.

    Two youngsters with soot-black faces, carrying shovels and other familiar utensils, lent quite an ancient feature to the scene, while another son of soot, conspicuous by the coronals of flowers that decorated his head, went in and about the crowds of citizens, gathering in the coins that the chimney explorer expects to collect as a matter of course. The sight was new to most colonials, especially the 'natives', many of whom were unacquainted with this old if not venerated institution.

    Among the pests I had to contend with were ants and garden slugs; as to the former my good friend, Mr F. Hustler, chemist, of Queenstown, explained his remedy to me:

    As for slugs, I obtained some fresh brewers' grain in a bucket from Mr Cooper's brewery and dropped it upon the garden beds, a few pinches here and there. I did this at dusk and about three hours afterwards went round with a bucket of freshly slaked lime and sprinkled it over the numerous guests that had accumulated to partake of the feast.

    Finally, a word or two on the ubiquitous mosquito, a plague upon my life in South Australia for many decades. In 1876, the editor of the Register, in a conciliatory tone and with gentle humour, registered a protest against the predatory hordes of mosquitoes savaging the city and environs:

    However, almost immediately a remedy to ward off this pest appeared in the form of an 'explosion of a small quantity of gunpowder', while a few months later a satirical citizen proclaimed:

    General Notes

    "The First Garden" is in the Register,
    27 December 1906, page 6d.
    "Kitchen Garden" is in the Royal Almanac, copy held in the Mortlock Library.

    "Washing Day in the River [in 1837]" is in the Register,
    27 December 1906, page 6d.

    Information on water supply to early homes is in the Observer,
    11 July 1891, page 42a.
    Also see Adelaide.

    "Domestic Life in Early Days" is in the Register,
    6 June 1914, page 17d.

    "Fires and Fireplaces [in Early Days]" is in the Register,
    1 April 1919, page 4f.
    Also see Adelaide.

    "Old-Time Bread and Bakers" is in the Register,
    5 February 1920, page 6e,
    "Old-Time Sugar" on
    20 August 1919, page 6f,
    2 March 1920, page 9d,
    "Old-Time Potatoes" on
    23 March 1920, page 4d,
    "Old Boots" on
    14 April 1920, page 6f,
    "Old-Time Clothing" on
    19 May 1920, page 6g.

    "Amusements of Pioneer Housewives" is in the Advertiser,
    7 August 1934, page 8d.

    "A Conspiracy Among Bakers" is in the Southern Australian,
    19 May 1840, page 3b.
    "Short-Weight Bread" is in the Register,
    28 July 1856, pages 2f-3c,
    29 and 30 August 1856, pages 2d and 2h,
    3, 5 and 6 September 1856, pages 2f, 2f and 2f,
    24 and 28 April 1885, pages 7d and 7a,
    12 and 21 May 1885, pages 5b and 7e,
    14 September 1898, page 7e.

    A poem concerning "short-weight" bakers is in the Register,
    29 May 1877, page 6a,
    2 June 1877, page 14b,
    12 November 1902, page 4h.
    "The Bread Act" is in the Register,
    5 February 1892, page 4f,
    "Our Daily Bread" on
    14 July 1906, page 11d.
    "Bakers Fifty Years Ago" is in the Observer,
    6 June 1914, page 34b.

    "The Bread Act" is in the Observer,
    6 February 1892, page 25a.
    "Light-weight" bread is discussed in the Register,
    18 September 1897, page 4h,
    18 September 1897, page 27e,
    7 July 1900, page 5e,
    8 April 1903, page 4f,
    11 and 14 July 1903, pages 8b and 6i,
    22 December 1903, page 4i,
    2 June 1905, page 4e,
    7 and 10 May 1907, pages 6e and 3e.
    "A Raid on Bakers" is in the Register,
    14 February 1906, page 4f.

    "South Australian Bread" is in the Register,
    9, 11 and 15 December 1905, pages 11a, 6d and 6c.

    "Old-Time Clothing in Adelaide" is in the Register,
    19 May 1920, page 6g,
    22 May 1920, page 29c.
    Also see South Australia.

    Handy hints for the home, medical and otherwise, are in the Observer,
    23 December 1843, page 6a,
    4 May 1844, page 3.

    "Dangerous Lamps" is in the Register,
    31 July 1862, page 2c.
    "Old Candles and Lamps" is in the Register
    11 June 1919, page 6g,
    14 June 1919, page 32d, (Also see Adelaide)
    "Early Day Beef" on
    11 October 1919, page 44e.

    A report on chimney sweeping by mechanical methods which were "warranted to cleanse the foulest and most intricate chimney" is in the Observer,
    25 April 1846, pages 1a-5a,
    "Extinguishing Fires in Chimneys" on
    is in the Register,
    14 and 17 December 1857, pages 3d and 3e.
    Chimney sweeping is discussed in the Register,
    7 January 1860, page 3e,
    20 January 1864, page 2e.
    "All Sweeps' Day" is in the Register,
    2 May 1890, page 5d.
    "Extinguishing Fires in Chimneys" is in the The dearth of chimney sweeps due to their departure for the goldfields is lamented in a letter to the Register on
    8 February 1853, page 3e:

    "Smoking Chimneys - A Perennial Nuisance" is in the Register,
    19 August 1926, page 5b.

    The production of a "cooking apparatus suitable to the varied requirements of domestic life in the colony" is discussed in the Observer,
    29 December 1849, page 3b.

    The control of cockroaches by placing "parings of cucumbers... about the floor" is discussed in the Register,
    17 December 1860, page 3f.

    "Lucifer Matches - Caution" is in the Register,
    3 March 1855, page 2h.
    "Patent Safety Matches" is in the Register,
    9 July 1868, page 2f,
    "Safety Matches" in the Express,
    24 June 1874, page 2b,
    7 July 1874, page 3b,
    23 September 1874, page 2b,
    2 November 1875, page 7b.

    "The Matches Prohibition Bill" is in the Register,
    15, 16, 23 and 24 June 1874, pages 4f, 6e, 5f-6b-d and 4g,
    2 September 1874, page 4d; also see
    8 and 23 July 1880, pages 1g (supp.) and 5b,
    9 and 23 February 1881, pages 5c and 5b.
    "The Safety Match" is in the Register,
    24 February 1916, page 5a.
    An article on matchbox collecting is in The Mail,
    15 June 1929, page 32.

    "The Sanitary Use of Charcoal" is in the Register,
    6 July 1855, page 2f.

    "Hints for Wives" is in the Register,
    23 April 1856, page 2h.
    24 April 1891, page 3h.

    "Destruction of Ants " is in the Register,
    26 and 28 March 1857, pages 3g and 3e.

    "The Lancashire Sewing Machine" is in the Observer,
    4 July 1857, page 8c,
    "Sewing Machines" in the Register,
    2 and 10 March 1863, pages 2h and 2g,
    5 January 1864, page 2h.

    "Colonial Ink" is in the Register,
    19 May 1857, page 3f,
    10 December 1892, page 6f.
    "A Dangerous Ink-Eraser" is in the Register,
    13 August 1889, page 5a.

    "Shingle Roofs" is in the Observer,
    30 January 1858, page 1c (supp.).

    A method of exterminating garden slugs is recited in the Register,
    27 September 1858, page 3a.
    A letter discussing methods to eliminate slugs and insects is in the Farm & Garden,
    12 May 1859, page 183.

    "House Flies - A Sanitary Hint" is in the Register,
    15 March 1859, page 3h.

    Desired standards of household hygiene are discussed in the Register,
    15 January 1859, page 3a; also see
    27 January 1859, page 3b.
    "Hygiene in the Home" is in the Register,
    31 July 1908, page 6b,
    4 August 1908, page 5e.

    The supply of game for Adelaide domestic dinner tables from the lakes is discussed in the Register,
    3 December 1859, page 3c.
    Also see South Australia.

    "Heat of Dwellings" is in the Register,
    10 February 1862, page 2f.

    A letter in respect of various "nuisances" is in the Register,
    3 June 1862, page 3b.

    "Domestic Dangers" is in the Register,
    18 May 1863, page 3e.

    "Salt in Food" is in the Register,
    8 March 1864, page 2f.

    "Beef and Mutton [Prices]" is in the Register,
    7 and 14 August 1865, pages 2d and 2f,
    8 September 1865, page 2g,
    "Dear Food" on
    12 December 1865, page 2g,
    "Dear Meat" on
    22 January 1866, page 2c.

    Housebreaking is discuss"Domestic Life in Early Days" is in the Register,
    13 and 17 October 1865, pages 2d and 2f.

    "Native Truffles" is in the Register,
    9 November 1865, page 2e.

    "Patent Earth Closets" is in the Observer,
    28 April 1866, page 4c (supp.),
    23 April 1866, page 2h,
    10 August 1871, page 3f,
    27 February 1872, page 5c,
    15 and 25 March 1872, pages 5e and 5e,
    12 April 1872, page 4f,
    "Lime in Earth Closets" is in the Register,
    7 March 1874, page 6c,
    21 March 1874, page 3g; also see
    14 September 1877, page 5d,
    8 February 1884, page 5d.

    The manufacture of washing machines by A. Chambers is reported in the Register,
    22 June 1867, page 2d.
    An obituary of A.O. Chambers, washing machine manufacturer, is in the Register,
    11 December 1903, page 5a:

    The manufacture of the Eureka washing machine is discussed in the Register,
    18 September 1869, page 2g,
    an advertisement is in the
    21 October 1871, page 3d; also see
    29 May 1873, page 5d,
    12 June 1873, page 7d,
    29 May 1877, page 2c,
    11 September 1877, page 2c,
    16 July 1878, page 2e,
    21 February 1879, page 2c,
    21 March 1879, page 3d.
    Information on a steam washing machine is in the Observer,
    27 February 1886, page 38d.
    J. Drage's "Western Washer" is described in the Register,
    7 March 1899, page 7d.

    Kerosine as a remedy for scalds is discussed in the Register,
    8 March 1869, page 2g.
    "Kerosene and Its Dangers" is in the Register,
    4 October 1898, page 4f.

    Treatment for in-grown toe nails are in the Register,
    30 April 1869, page 2e.

    A "new and delicious" vegetable, Raphanus condatus (mongri) is discussed in the Register,
    26 October 1869.

    The trouble in coping with silverfish is reported in the Observer,
    13 January 1872, page 5b.

    A refrigeration appliance for freezing drinks is described in the Register,
    7 March 1872, page 5f,
    "A Dry-Air Refrigerator" on
    22 January 1887, page 7b.
    Also see Adelaide.

    "Wall-Papers and Disease" is in the Register,
    16 September 1872, page 6e.

    Gas fires in homes is discussed in the Register,
    16 July 1874, page 4g,
    18 July 1874, page 7d.
    "Gas Fires" is in the Register,
    16 April 1874, page 4g,
    Observer, 18 July 1874, page 7d.

    Details of a new washing machine patented by David Wald are in the Register,
    11 September 1877, page 5a.
    A trial of a washing machine and boiler is reported in the Observer,
    22 February 1879, page 3e.
    An exhibition of machines is reported in the Observer,
    24 May 1879, page 14e; also see
    29 November 1879, page 7f,
    28 November 1879, page 5a,
    11 February 1885, page 5e,
    25 February 1886, page 5c. Sketches of machines are in Frearson's Weekly,
    24 August 1878, page 202,
    26 April 1879, page 85.
    The troubles associated with kerosene lamps are discussed in the Observer,
    13 and 20 January 1872, pages 5b and 8c,
    17 February 1872, page 13g.
    A kerosene gas stove is described in the Express,
    6 June 1895, page 3b.

    Ventilation is discussed in the Register,
    6 July 1875, pages 5b-7d,
    24 July 1875, page 13a.
    "Hot Rooms" is in the Register,
    14 and 17 February 1876, pages 5g and 6b,
    "Unwholesome Air" on
    26 May 1876, page 4g.

    "Non-Explosive Lamp Powder" is in the Register,
    10 August 1876, page 5c.

    A portable cooking machine invented by W.A. Pratt of Norwood is discussed in the Register,
    10 October 1877, page 5e,
    13 October 1877, page 7e.

    An apparatus for cooling rooms is described in the Register,
    30 January 1878, page 5d,
    2 February 1878, page 19g.

    "Healthy Households" is in the Observer,
    29 June 1878, pages 10e-22d.

    "Hot Cross Buns" is in the Register,
    11 April 1879, page 5c.

    "Cottage Cookery" is in the Register,
    27 June 1879, page 6c,
    5 July 1879, page 19e,
    6 September 1879, page 3g.

    "Unwholesome Food" is in the Register,
    2 and 15 May 1879, pages 4e and 6f.

    "A Remedy for Cracked Cement Tanks" is in the Register,
    19 May 1879, page 1e (supp.).

    "Happy Homes and How to Make Them" is in the Register,
    15 August 1879, page 5c.

    Our Meat Supply" is in the Register,
    29 April 1880, page 4d,
    1 May 1880, page 6b.
    "Why the Price of Meat Has Risen" is in the Register,
    20 and 22 May 1884, pages 5c and 4g.
    "Cold [Refrigerated] Meat" is in the Register,
    31 October 1884, page 5b.

    "Improved Kettles" is in the Register,
    7 June 1880, page 4h.
    Photographs of an automatic kettle invented by Mr W. Maggin of Kurralta Park are in the Chronicle,
    25 February 1922, page 30.

    "Eating and Drinking" is in the Register,
    3 January 1881, page 4f.

    "Preserving Tomatoes" is in the Register,
    22 February 1881, page 1c (supp.).

    "Sale of Food and Drugs Bill" is in the Register,
    28 April 1882, page 4d.

    A new cooking apparatus is described in the Register,
    14 June 1882, page 5e,
    17 June 1882, page 8g.
    A kerosine gas stove is described in the Express,
    6 June 1895, page 3b.

    "Kitchen Gardens for Cottages" is in the Observer,
    2 December 1882, page 12b,
    "Our Front Gardens" on 8 December 1883, page 11c,
    "The Working Man's Garden" on 11 October 1884, page 12a.

    "Evils of High-Heeled Boots" is in the Register,
    24 January 1884, page 5d.

    Joseph Goetz of Carrington Street "is the first in the Australian colonies to introduce the making of the famous Vienna bread...".
    See Register, 9 June 1884, page 5c.

    The introduction of the first butcher's refrigerator into Adelaide by Mr W. Kither is reported in the
    Register, 23 July 1884, page 6e.

    A poem titled "To a Sausage" is in The Lantern,
    16 May 1885, page 9.
    "Behind the Scenes with the Sausage - A Disgrace to Civilisation" is in the Express,
    8 and 13 August 1907, pages 4d and 3g,
    "The Rehabilitation of the Sausage" on
    13 February 1908, page 4g.

    Perambulators are discussed in the Register,
    30 May 1885, page 7e.

    "Unwholesome Food" is in the Register,
    8 June 1885, page 5a,
    "What We Eat" on
    11 July 1885, page 6h,
    "Food Poisoning" on
    17 and 31 December 1885, pages 5a and 5a,
    "Cheap and Wholesome Food" on
    12 September 1887, page 4g.
    Information on the fresh food supply is in the Register,
    1 April 1890, page 4g.

    "House Interiors" is in the Register,
    25 July 1885, page 7g.

    "The Duties of Light" is in the Register,
    5 September 1885, page 7e.

    "Caution to Crewelworkers" is in the Register,
    5 December 1885, page 5d.

    The Kitchen Garden" is in the Register,
    26 March 1886, page 3g.

    "Disposal of House Refuse" is in the Register,
    3 January 1887, page 7h.

    "Salad Making and Dressing" is in the Register,
    19 April 1887, page 3h.

    "Personal Hygiene" is in the Register,
    30 July 1887, page 5c.

    "Malt Vinegar versus Acetic Acid" is debated in the Advertiser,
    20, 24 and 26 September 1887, pages 7f, 7c and 6d.

    "Christmas Decorations" is in the Register,
    20 December 1887, page 6b.
    "Christmas Meat" is in the Register,
    22 December 1904, page 4g.
    "The Christmas Pudding" is in the Register,
    24 December 1904, page 6g.
    "The Christmas Goose" is in the Register,
    20 and 21 December 1911, pages 7b and 7b,
    21 December 1912, page 15g.
    "The Christmas Table - Will Cost More" is in the Register,
    23 December 1914, page 11c.
    Also see South Australia - The Colony - Christmas in South Australia.

    The Christmas Pudding
    (Taken from Geoffrey H Manning's A Colonial Experience, Chapter 115)

    The history of the origin of the plum pudding, which today ranks with roast beef in an Englishman's affections, has been lost. The Quakers, shrewd men that they were, evidently thought the people would be weaned from the detestable superstition surrounding Christmas pie only by the substitution of another dish, possibly more toothsome.

    Ancient records bear testimony to this sect distinguishing their feasts with a 'heretical kind of pudding known by their name.' Whether the Christmas pudding of the present day was evolved from this 'heretical' triumph of cookery cannot be stated with certainty.

    If such is the case another instance of the growth of the spirit of toleration is afforded in the fact that people of all shades of religions and political opinion can, in Australia, sit amicably at the same board and partake of the same dish, with no more heat than that which is engendered by consuming full-weight piping-hot pudding in a semi-tropical climate.

    Some people may be as much disposed to regard as superstitions the insertion into the pudding of coins, rings and miniature dolls, just as some Englishmen in the past viewed the Christmas pie as being superstitious. How these articles were first included among the ingredients is also unknown. Today, in 1902, the consumer of plum pudding may claim to be a patriot for does he not contribute through the customs to the revenue?

    For every pound of currants mixed in the pudding twopence duty has to be paid and threepence for every pound of raisins and candied peel. The spices, which afford a pleasant favour, have before reaching the kitchen added one-halfpenny per pound to the public revenue; while the sugar has been levied upon to the extent of more than a half-pence per pound. When brandy sauce has been added, further payment at the rate of 14 shillings a gallon has been made.

    The Christmas pudding is more than a passing event, a mere dish served up at a particular time of the year. It may justly claim to have become an institution in the life of English men and women, wherever they find themselves. Whether partaken amid the snows of the old country bedecked with a sprig of holly, or in the heat of southern climes adorned with a piece of Christmas bush, it is a welcome guest in every English-speaking home as Santa Claus himself.

    Today, however, a significance is coming over the ingredients of the Australian Christmas pudding, or rather, these ingredients are being obtained from different sources than a few years ago. Indeed, it is more likely that this year (1904), for the first time, the majority of the puddings consumed in South Australia will represent entirely local production.

    No currants and sultanas have been imported into South Australia this year, local production having proved sufficient for requirements. For some years raisins have been grown locally in quantities large enough to keep out importations. Except for the spices, all the ingredients in the South Australian pudding this Yuletide will represent the product of the State.

    National customs die hard and who knows that, wherever the ingredients are produced, the Christmas pudding may not constitute one of those sentimental ties which unite English people wherever they may roam in this universe?

    An Old English Recipe

    The farmer's wife in Northern England makes her Christmas pudding as soon as the first flurry of snow has raced down from the hills. Allow me to give the reader an ancient recipe handed down to me from my grandmother:

    "The Art of Ironing" is in the Register,
    27 October 1890, page 3g,
    16 August 1890, page 8b,
    "Mending Day" on
    3 January 1891, page 8c.

    "Home Made Sweetmeats" is in the Register,
    27 October 1890, page 3g.

    "Hints to Amateur Dressmakers" is in the Register,
    24 November 1890, page 7h.

    "Hints to Wives" is in the Register,
    24 April 1891, page 3h.

    "Household Hints" is in the Observer,
    29 August 1891, page 8e, 19 September 1891, page 8e.

    A cure for chilblains is in the Observer,
    5 August 1893, page 14c.

    "A New Idea in Washing Coppers" is in the Register,
    11 May 1894, page 5c,
    12 May 1894, page 30b.

    Information on gas stoves is in the Register,
    23 August 1895, page 6g.

    "The Butcher's Bill" is in the Register,
    12 June 1897, page 4g.
    A poem titled "The Butcher's Boy" is in The Lantern,
    4 December 1886, page 19.

    "Simpson's Patent Sanitary Mattress" is in the Register,
    10 August 1897, page 5b.

    The invention of a "new shower bath" by Mr Wedler is reported in the Observer,
    9 October 1897, page 14e.

    "Common Sense in Bathing" is in the Register,
    3 January 1898, page 4i.

    "Underground Rooms" is in the Register,
    14 January 1898, page 5b,
    15 January 1898, page 29b.

    "What Shall We Eat?" is in the Register,
    30 May 1898, page 4e.

    Comprehensive articles on the subject of "Our Food Supply" are in the Advertiser,
    5, 7, 14 and 19 May 1898, pages 6b (bread), 10c (meat), 5f (dairy produce), and 6a (fish),
    4 and 20 June 1898, pages 7a (fruit & vegetable) and 6c (milk); also see
    12 May 1898, page 6i.

    "Women and Housework" is in the Observer,
    13 August 1898, page 24e.

    A demonstration of electric lighting in a suburban home is reported in the Register,
    14 September 1898, page 5h.
    Also see Adelaide - Lighting the City and Homes.

    "Bacon and Eggs" is in the Register,
    2 August 1902, page 6f.

    "How to Take a Bath" is in the Observer,
    25 February 1899, page 40c.
    Stevens' bathheaters are discussed in the Observer,
    21 September 1907, page 31e.

    W. H. Birk's "mosquito cones" are discussed in the Register,
    25 March 1899, page 5c.
    Also see South Australia - Flora and Fauna - Mosquitoes, Flies and Other Pests.

    "Water Filters - A Warning" is in the Register,
    29 July 1899, page 10b.
    Also see Adelaide - Water Supply.

    "Baths in Dwellings" is the subject of comment in the Advertiser,
    16 June 1900, page 6b,
    "A Bath is Necessary - Every House Should Have One" on
    8 June 1923, page 10d.

    "First Aid - A Chat With Sister Hill" is in the Observer,
    1 July 1899, page 14b.

    A local invention, the Albatross lamp wick, is discussed in the Express,
    2 March 1899, page 2h.

    "High Prices for Food" is in the Register,
    13 August 1901, page 6f.

    "What Australians Eat" is in the Observer,
    24 January 1903, page 4a (supp.).

    "The Fuel Supply of Adelaide" is in the Chronicle,
    12 July 1903, page 30a.
    A poem titled "The Wood Carter" is in The Lantern,
    12 March 1867, page 19.
    "A Firewood Famine" is in the Express,
    19 April 1910, page 4i,
    "Firewood Supplies" in the Register,
    17 August 1910, page 4e,
    "The Price of Firewood" on
    4 April 1912, page 3b.
    31 August 1912, page 46b,
    "Winter Wood Shortage" is in the Register,
    5 July 1917, page 6d.

    "The Price of Fuel [firewood]" is in the Register,
    15 and 16 March 1907, pages 6e and 9i,
    3 and 4 April 1907, pages 4f and 4d.
    "The Price of Wood" is in the Register,
    15 July 1908, page 5c.

    "How to Grow Daffodils" is in the Advertiser,
    15 March 1905, page 6e.

    "A New Gas Range" is in the Register,
    28 November 1906, page 3h.

    "Food With a History - The Hot Cross Bun" is in the Express,
    3 April 1907, page 1e.

    "Homely Hints for the Home" is in the Advertiser,
    1, 8, 15, 22 and 29 June 1907, pages 8h, 8h, 11a, 11a and 11a.

    "The Household Dustbin - Refuse Turned to Manure" is in the Advertiser,
    15 January 1908, page 10e.
    A strike of bottle collectors is reported in the Express,
    17 March 1898, page 2e.
    "Bottle-O! - Collector and Marine Dealers" is in The Mail,
    4 February 1928, page 1a.

    "The Cost of Living in Adelaide" is in the Register,
    12 November 1879, page 4c.
    "The Cost of Living - Hints for Housewives" is in the Register, 11 January 1909, page 8g.

    "Vacuum Cleaning" is in the Register,
    4 February 1909, page 8e.
    Information on a "Daisy" vacuum cleaner is in the Register,
    1 May 1912, page 6f.
    "The Electric Vacuum Cleaner" is in the Register,
    4 May 1926, page 13f,
    "The Housewife's Friend [Electrolux]" on
    21 May 1926, page 6f.

    "The White Shirt" is in the Register,
    3 September 1909, page 4g.

    "House Names" is in the Register,
    2 November 1909, page 4f.

    "What the People Drink" is in the Register,
    7 January 1910, page 4d.

    "In Toyland - The New and the Old" is in the Register,
    10 December 1910, page 8c.

    "An Intolerable Nuisance - The Paris Art Company" is in the Register,
    14 January 1911, page 12e.

    "The People's Food - Price Comparisons" is in the Register,
    17 January 1911, page 7a.
    Comparisons between modern-day and 1854 prices are made in the Register,
    29 January 1917, page 4f.

    "Cooking" is in the Register,
    12 July 1911, page 6e.

    "Cooking in Paper Bags - A Revolution in the Kitchen" is in the Express,
    20 July 1911, page 4h,
    15 August 1911, page 6f.

    "Heat, Thirst and Other Things" is in the Register,
    1 December 1911, page 6f.

    "Animals and the Holidays" is in the Register,
    23 December 1911, page 12f.

    "The Housewife Athlete - A Woman's Working Day" is in the Express,
    27 August 1912, page 4d.

    "The Coolgardie Cooler" is in the Observer,
    12 October 1912, page 14c.

    "Gum Chewing - The New Habit" is announced in the Advertiser,
    2 November 1912, page 6g.

    "Electricity in the Home" is in the Advertiser,
    18 June 1912, page 12d,
    "Electric Home in Adelaide" on
    1 April 1926, page 26g,
    "Electricity in the Home" in The News,
    10 December 1924, page 8c,
    "The Age of Electricity" is in the Register,
    6 and 20 July 1926, pages 7h and 7f,
    "Electric Servants" on
    3 August 1926, page 14c,
    "The Electric Home" on
    28 September 1926, page 7f,
    3 and 17 May 1927, pages 7c and 6c.

    "Electric Home in Adelaide [A.N. Dawkins of Kensington Park]" is in the Register,
    6 April 1926, page 13f,
    "Cooking by Electricity" on
    20 April 1926, page 7c.

    "Housewives' Problems - Hints and Observations" is in the Observer,
    19 July 1913, page 50a.

    "Fourteen in One House - Remarkable Rents" is in the Register,
    4 September 1913, page 7b.

    "The Masses and the Cost of Living" is in the Express,
    21 May 1914, page 4f.

    "Water for Gardens - Bores and Wells" is in the Register,
    21 August 1914, page 6f.

    "Domestic Necessities - Higher Prices Justified" is in the Register,
    1 April 1915, page 7c.

    Women's Extravagance" is in the Register,
    25 July 1916, page 7d.

    "A House-Numbering Problem" is in the Advertiser,
    10 October 1917, page 8g,
    "Letter Boxes for Private Houses" in the Advertiser,
    12 January 1924, page 17d,
    19 February 1924, page 3g,
    26 and 30 April 1924, pages 12e and 14c,
    3, 5 and 15 May 1924, pages 13e, 5f and 13b,
    11 and 13 June 1924, pages 13e and 12f,
    28 June 1924, page 22f,
    2 July 1924, page 9g,
    "Letter Carriers in Early Adelaide" on
    10 February 1925, page 14f.
    A history of letter boxes is in the Observer,
    1 September 1928, page 71a.

    "The Black Rat in Adelaide - A Legacy of the War" is in the Register,
    12 February 1916, page 9b,
    30 March 1917, page 9a.

    "Boots! Heavy Cost of Repairs" is in the Register,
    31 January 1918, page 7a.

    "Personality in Furnishing" is in the Register,
    26 June 1919, page 5c.

    "Price of - An Official Enquiry" is in the Express,
    8 March 1921, page 1f.

    "Built-In Furniture" is in the Register,
    10 November 1921, page 4b.

    "Sentiment and Shopping" is in the Register,
    19 December 1921, page 6d.

    The introduction of "The Original Watersafe" is discussed in the Register,
    9 December 1921, page 11a.

    "Fortune Telling from the Tea Cup" is in the Observer,
    15 December 1923, page 25c.

    A recipe for making candles is in the Advertiser,
    14 August 1924, page 15d.

    Recipes for and the making of "Damper and Brownie" are in the Advertiser,
    19 September 1934, page 21b.

    "The Art of Making Damper" is in the Observer,
    12 April 1924, page 47d.
    Recipes for and the making of "Damper and Brownie" are in the Advertiser,
    19 September 1934, page 21b.

    "Old Wallpaper - Harbor for Disease" is in the Advertiser,
    10 June 1925, page 10e.

    "How to Keep House" is in the Register,
    12 December 1925, page 9g.

    "What People Eat in South Australia" is in The Mail,
    26 December 1925, page 17f,
    "The Art of Eating" in the Register,
    16 July 1927, page 10f.

    "Heating the House" is in the Register,
    24 June 1926, page 4c.

    "Making Money at Home" is in the Register,
    29 June 1926, page 5e.

    "The Problem of Naming a House" is in the Register,
    1 July 1926, page 4d.

    "The Bathroom - Equipment and Maintenance" is in the Observer,
    23 April 1927, page 59e,
    "Ups and Downs in the History of Washing" on
    14 August 1930, page 19d.

    "Aluminium Cooking Utensils" is in the Register,
    1 and 8 May 1928, pages 8h and 8h.

    "Bottle-O! - Collector and Marine Dealers" is in The Mail,
    4 February 1928, page 1a.

    "Home Swimming Pool" is in the Register,
    27 December 1928, page 6c.

    "Central Heating" is in the Observer,
    20 April 1929, page 55c.

    "Why Rooms are Cold" is in the Observer,
    27 July 1929, page 46a.

    "Romance of Furniture - Many Antiques in Adelaide" is in the Advertiser,
    8 August 1931, page 5d.

    "Etiquette 80 Years Ago and Now" is in The News,
    20 April 1932, page 8c.

    "Writing of Letters Has Become a Lost Art" is in The News,
    21 March 1936, page 4d.

    Housing, Architecture and Ancillary Matters - Choose again