Carrying Water for Mortar

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Wednesday, May 10, 1911: I did about half of the ironing this morning. I don’t call that very much of a suit do you? This afternoon I had to carry water to be used in making mortar and spilt waters on my skirts.

Summer 2010 photo of the farm where Grandma lived when she was writing this diary.

 Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Why was the family making mortar? Does Grandma mean they were making cement—or mortar to be used when bricks were laid?

I think she probably was referring to cement. I picture that the path between the house and barn was just a dirt path and that it probably was sometimes muddy. Maybe they were laying a sidewalk.

Or, maybe they were making a cement floor for the barnyard. Until I saw this entry I never thought about the barnyard—now I’m wondering whether the floor was dirt or cement. . . . Or. . . .

One thought on “Carrying Water for Mortar

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