Friday, 21 June 2013

Milking Time - Sepia Saturday

In the days before milking machines there were many tasks to be performed, even as we can see from this week's prompt a churn being delivered by a man on horseback.

During World War I milk was delivered to your door from churns sometimes carried by women.
A woman at work - 1917
(Imperial War Museum collections)
If you look closely you can see the hooves of the horse pulling the cart.

This practice continued between the wars; in our village deliveries were made by Mr Capendale, a local farmer. You had to go out to his cart for milk to be ladled into your own container. My elder brother got into trouble for filling one of his churns with stones when he wasn't looking.

Of course before you could use a churn it had to be cleaned as can be seen at a farm in Norfolk during WWII.
Steam cleaning a churn - 1944(Imperial War Museum collections)
Prior to the war in Holland Jewish immigrants were trained to become farmers as you can see on this short video form August 1937..
(Nederlands Instituut voor Beeid en Geluid - CC BY-SA 3.0 NL)

There was no steam cleaning here, just women cleaning milk churns by hand.

For other related posts you need to cross over to Sepia-saturday-182 and follow the links.


Wendy said...

I remember when my parents had milk delivered, so nice and cold in glass bottles.

Little Nell said...

How nice that you are able to name your delivery man and to give us a personal anecdote about your brother.

Karen S. said...

Bob, great information and photos here. Did the thought of how these folks are dressed today when working at a creamery are in comparison to back in the day. I saw one photo in my research that had a sign over what they were churning that read, No smoking please!

Jo said...

I don't remember milk being delivered in churns, bottles of milk is what I recall. Cardboard tops. funnily enough we were talking about this and hubby remembers cork tops or foil. I sure don't remember cork. Also frozen cream popping out of the bottle neck and trying to get to it before the birds did.

Great reminders.

Sharon said...

Yes it is great that you have a personal story to relate.

I remember when we would leave money in the letter box for the milk (in bottles) to be delivered in the morning.

Could you imagine leaving money in the letterbox today? No Way!

Liz Needle said...

Good memories. We had a milkman with a horse and cart. He'd come by in the wee small hours and fill the billycan we left on the front veranda. We also had bread delivered in the same way and the Bottlo would drive by to collect bottles and rags.

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

I remember having a milk man too, but I have never seen nor thought about how it worked before my time.

Great photos, Bob.

Kathy M.

Postcardy said...

I remember milk men delivering milk in bottles too. My mother would leave a list of what she wanted. I think they stopped using horses long before my time, at least in the city.

Brett Payne said...

Thanks for the video link. Some of my ancestors were from Overijssel, but they left there long before the time of that video.

Hazel Ceej said...

I learned something new again about milk and how it's done in your part of the world. I remember only one man ever went house to house selling soya milk and other soy products in our neighborhood when I was little. He was rare. I like the steam cleaning a churn photo.


Alex Daw said...

The churns on the back of the cart look like giant salt and pepper shakers or chess pieces! I used to love having milk delivered. I think it was delivered until maybe about ten years ago?? In cartons of course. We'd leave the money by the front door. I'd always wake when I heard the poor milko running up to our front door with his torch and hear the ute or whatever it was making its way down the street.

Tattered and Lost said...

I miss having milk delivered to the door. There was something wonderful about those old glass milk jugs. There is a local dairy that does sell their milk in glass. It's very expensive so I've never tried it. I have thought of buying it just once to get the glass container. From then on I'd bring home the plastic jug and empty it into the glass one.

Just think of all the jobs that are no longer around, including steam cleaning milk churns.

Joan said...

Interesting photos and post. I was a bit surprised that one would be able to ladle the milk into their own container. Though not so far removed, as I remember selling our excess milk and cream to the neighbors when we were eking out our first years on the ranch. When I look back, I think they were not so much interested in the milk and cream as they were helping the struggling "kids" on their first ranch.

Titania said...

Bob, great post. The stones in the churne, what boys get up to! We had to go to the dairy to get the milk, at 7pm it was open. The film was interesting to see it was still all done by hand, no machines. The displacement of people was terrible.
Still happening now.

Kristin said...

I remember milk being delivered to our milk shoot. And I remember selling the excess goat milk to people with ulcers when we had dairy goats in Mississippi.


My memories of the milkman are not as nostalgic as mine drove a truck and delivered glass bottles, which eventually were changed for plastic bags, than cartons... Those glass bottles were much better, in my opinion.