Monday, November 10, 2008

Did you know that in --

Did you know…There were Alarm clocks in 1380? Yap, “Domestic Technology” by Nell Du Vall said, German Monks used them ‘to keep track of religious observances’.

The book also says the first Air Conditioners were in 1842! And there were Baby bottles as far back in our history as -700. B-but Diapers didn’t show up until 1961!Huh? What did babies wear before this? I guess you have to buy the book to find out.

According to “Domestic Technology” the 1800 were a time of development. We apparently had Paper bags for the first time 1860, and Ballpoint pen by 1888, as well as Barbed wire 1867-68. And can you believe it – we had Bathroom’s as far back as -1700?

This book is full of awesome information for historical writers. It gives detailed facts. Did you ever wonder what women in the past did about their Moon-cycles, before the first Kotex was made in 1921? “Domestic Technology” gives you interesting historical facts about how women took care of those private matters, which gives any historical book a touch of authenticity.
Did you know, Tampons only came about in 1936, Tampax followed a year later in 1937. But before any of those inventions came about, Nell Du Vall tells you women used wool wrapped around a tapered wooden spool and inserted it like a tampon or tampax….OMG, I can only imagine the itching that wool caused!

Other fascinating dates you’ll fine in this book – range from when foods first appeared, to preservation, processing, and cooking them. He also gives dates about tools, clothing, cleaning, and he says the first piped water for waste removable was around 2000 B.C., can you believe that?
He says Queen Elizabeth had a toilet installed at Richmond Palace in 1586! By 1660 the rich were importing toilets from France and there were automatic flushing ones by 1678. The bidet followed. Its first mention in history was in 1710.

By 1899 woman could no longer use “Not tonight, dear, I have a headache” because
Bayer Aspirin had hit the market.

Black Jack gum 1870…you remember it – it taste like Licorice. Beeman’s gum followed in 1898.

Bleach has been around since 1746 so when Bloomers showed up in 1851 they could be cleaned if there was an accident with the wool thing we were talking about earlier.

Boysenberry, one of my favorite berries wasn’t around until 1930 – good thing I wasn’t born until way after that, and no, I’m not telling you when...and don’t assume you know because I admitted to knowing about Black Jack gum. I only remember Black Jack gum because my granddad gave it to me once when I was a wee one. I hated Licorice back then, so the gum didn’t stay in my mouth very long.

Anyone who loves CHEESE, it’s been around since -4000, can you believe that? Brick Cheese 1877. Oh, my favorite cheese besides Swiss… Brie Cheese 9th Century – those lucky dogs! Where’s the crackers? And you can’t have Broccoli 1720 without Cheddar cheese 1666 …well, I can, but me hubby can’t.

In “Domestic Technology” there are thousands of dates for anything you could ever want to know about something that was invented or discovered. This is a wonderful book. I highly recommend it. It’s a book every historical writer needs to have in his/her library for research.

I’ll leave you with just a few more dates to fire your imaginations.

Coffee 1000, I wonder if they had a Starbucks? Nope, first coffee house opened up in 1554 (but to find out where you’ll have to get the book – who would have guessed!) and it obviously wasn’t a Starbucks. Since Starbucks was founded in 1971. Instant coffee 1901 But Doughnuts didn't come around until 1847 OMG, it took 293 years later for them to figure out you need Doughnuts to go with the coffee? I wonder what the cops did back then?

Toothbrushes 1498 but what good was that? We didn’t get Toothpaste until 1892 that’s
394 year later!

Chocolate 1520 Thank god for this – but I feel sorry for those women who had to live without it before then…. I wonder what they did at Menopause?

Potato Chips 1853 would you have guessed this one? Queen Victoria could have been
eating chips along with her lunch. But I can’t believe we had potato chips before we had Toilet Paper 1857 and the Toilet Roll followed about 14 years later (if my math is right) in 1871.

Condoms 1701 always good for romance writers to know this one. But you’d be surprised what it was made out of…Vall tells you in the book. And you’ll never guess what held it on. LOL. I wonder it they had pink ones back then?
Diaphragm 1881 OMG, we’ve had this thing around FOR THAT LONG? I’m telling you
this book has it all and so much more.

Neiman Marcus 1907 Oh!!!! This use to be my favorite place to shop! Still would be if I hadn’t moved to a very small, tiny, minute, diminutive, miniature, wee tike of a town – did I say a very small town, where WalMart is the big name store? And did you just hear me fling my body on the floor in a tantrum? Sorry you had to hear that.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this week’s chat. I’m now depressed; still in a dither over the WalMart/Neiman Marcus situation…. but I admit when I find an interesting book like “Domestic Technology” by Nell Du Vall I like to share some of what hides inside, so other writers can discover it’s value and buy one for their own research libraries.



Lea said...

Um. Wow Hawk, just wow....

Not only is “Domestic Technology” by Nell Du Vall, and excellent research source for romance authors, it also provides a hell of a lot of information for a game of Trivial Pursuit!

By the way, the tampon thing. So not my idea of a good time. All the more reason to have been born in the 20th century! YIKES....

It's always a pleasure and an education Hawk.

How the hell are you anyway? (Aside from the small town tantrum. *ggg*)

Best Regards

Houston A.W. Knight said...


LOL, you always make me laugh!

No, I didn't like the wool tampon idea either - a little rough if you ask me, but that's what they did back then.
It's no wonder the queen never smiled - I wouldn't be smiling either in wool.

The book is a wealth of info' I just love it and wanted to share so other writer's could discover it as well.

My little tike (my yorkie-poo) has a growth on his paw and I'm stressing out about the surgery he'll be facing, but other than that - my latest wip is a western and it's flowing pretty good - I hope to sell my sexy Indian hero at the nationals this year.
So cross the fingers!


Lea said...

Hi Hawk:

My fingers are double crossed for you! Rock on. :) It sounds like you have authored some amazing work and I know success will be yours. Just keep positive.

Thank you for your comment about my baby. It is as the caption says on her picture. She is my heart. I do hope your yorkie is okay, I know I go nuts when one of my pooches isn't well. It is just.... the pits. :(

Take Care
Let me know how your baby's surgery goes.

Houston A.W. Knight said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Houston A.W. Knight said...

Lea -

Again, thank you so much for the kind words on my Little tike. I do love him so.
And yes, I will let you know how he is after the surgery next Thursday.

I know "Domestic Technology" is not for all readers - it isn't one you'd sit down to read in the afternoon but for a writer - it's a must have research book!

I always enjoy your comments! Your blog always makes me smile. It's one everyone should check out - like "Domestic Technology" it's one that's a must see.

For anyone else reading this who wants to check out Lea's blog - just left click on that cute picture of the white dog and it'll take you right over there.

And while I'm recommending awesome blogs after checking out Lea's go see Vicki Lane's as well. There's a link for both on my main page.

The two sights are totally different from each other but both of them are Great blogs!


Lea said...


You made my day and my week! Thank you so much for the compliment. I so appreciate it and am humbled actually!

Your blog is awesome too by the way! You post such interesting, thought provoking information. :)

Thank you again

Houston A.W. Knight said...


You and I are alike in that we like our caves. LOL.

What I said about your blog wasn't flattery - I speak the truth - it's awesome in content and graphics! I enjoy it, and from the other feedback I see when I visit your blog - so do others.

I'm grateful to Vicki Lane. I saw your blog there first!
Vicki has the talent for finding the "good stuff" - so I follow her links - she's a girl "in the know" if you know what I mean. :0)