Posts Tagged ‘1910s’

The far end of High Street

April 25, 2013

Some areas of the village don’t change all that much. The High Street is still very much the same as it was in this picture from roughly 100 years ago.

At the far end of Market Lavington High Street

At the far end of Market Lavington High Street

Well, perhaps we should say the buildings haven’t changed much, externally. A similar scene today would have a lot of cars in it and we know many of the buildings have had extensive internal alterations.

The building at the extreme right had been built as a Quaker meeting house in the 18th century but it was taken over by the Independent Church in the early 19th century and remained as the Congregational Church until the new, bigger premises were built in 1892. They’d have been just behind the photographer. From 1892 the old chapel became the Sunday School for the Congregational Church until the 1960s, when the Powner Hall was built alongside the 1892 chapel. The old building was sold and was, for many years, an artist’s studio, retaining, still, many of the church features.

Further down on the right hand side there is The Police House. This photo could date from about the time that Sergeant Hillier had his sadly brief sojourn here.

The left hand side has a mix of residential and commercial premises – it is often hard to spot the difference but there were a surprising number of shops at this end of the village. The pavement in front of the houses on the left is now wider, in places much wider, than it was then.

Some of the houses still had their thatched roof back then.

At the far end of the photo we can make out the ‘bell tower’ on the Workmans’ Hall

Amongst new items on display in the museum this year is the clock which once served the village on that building. We look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at your museum in 2013.


More dressed (or partially so) Dummies

March 22, 2013

Our display of costumed people, sitting on the old 18th century settle is always liked by visitors to the museum. For 2013, we have a display which depicts a morning scene in the early 1900s. The scene depicts a family group rising and getting dressed. It is an opportunity to have on display some of our large and interesting collection of under garments.

Market Lavington Museum's display of costume for 2013

Market Lavington Museum’s display of costume for 2013

The display is not yet complete but there is a clear message in it. Undergarments were white.

Amongst items being modelled or displayed there is a 1910 cotton nightdress, a similar aged cotton stocking is decorated only up to the calf. No higher than that would have been seen.  There is a 1906 wedding petticoat and a 1910 child’s petticoat. Suitable accessories have been found to add flavour to the scene.

This display will be for one year only so make sure you visit in 2013.

May Potter and the Red Cross

December 29, 2012

May Potter, later, Mrs Elisha, was an all-round good egg. Apart from her paid job she was active in all sorts of voluntary ways in the village, even when not much more than a child.

Helena May Potter was born in Market Lavington in 1903. She’d have just celebrated her 15th birthday. The following year, 1919, May had done enough to earn a certificate from the Red Cross.

Red Cross Certificate earned by May Potter of Market Lavington in 1919

Red Cross Certificate earned by May Potter of Market Lavington in 1919

Sadly, we have not been able to find out just what May did, or where. But one can imagine that injured and sick men appreciated her cheery smile and dedication. These happy attributes were something that generations of school children in Market Lavington were soon to benefit from.

A Dramatic Presentation in 1910

November 28, 2012

Back in 1910, the Parish Room was a new structure. Market Lavington had a hall dedicated and suited to the needs of a village community – and that included putting on plays. In those days, more than 100 years ago, interior photos of a large group of excited actors were difficult. Film was still comparatively slow and the poor interior light would have meant a long exposure and many a blurred actor as a result

But a solution was close at hand. You could get the cast to do an extra curtain call away from the hall, in the grounds of the Vicarage. The two buildings were closely adjacent. The Vicarage is now a part of the nursing home and the Parish Room was demolished to provide extra facilities in a new part of the same nursing home.

And having taken a cast photo, then why not issue it as a postcard. After all, there’s a fair chance that cast members would like a copy themselves, and they’d like to send it to family and friends away from Market Lavington. So that’s what we have at Market Lavington Museum – a postcard with a picture of the cast of a 1910 play, taken in the grounds of the old Vicarage.

Let’s look at the back of the card first. There’s a message. It isn’t in code like another card we showed recently, but it seems to be almost as hard to read!

Message on a card sent from Market Lavington in 1910

The sender has given an address which we think was Mona Cottage in Market Lavington.

It’s lovely to see a Market Lavington postmark.

The card has a Market Lavington postmark

Now to the picture itself.

The card shows the cast of a 1910 play performed in the Parish Room in Market Lavington

This card was given to the museum, many years ago, by May Elisha. She was able to tell us the names of three girls in the picture – Emmie Boulter, Fanny Merritt and Ann Smith. Sadly, we can’t attach faces to names.

However, we have picked on a few faces to enlarge. Maybe somebody will recognise a face here.

A Tin Bath

November 15, 2012

Today we feature one of those items which will get older viewers saying, ‘I used to use one of them!’  It’s a small tin bath or, more correctly, a galvanized steel bath.

This one is small – more baby bath size and, in fact, the family who used it soon found it too small for that and it became an alternative sink for clothes washing.

Tin bath used by the Gale family of The Spring, Market Lavington

This item dates from around 1910 although similar items would have been made much more recently. Indeed, they may still be in production. Our bath is a small one at just 55cm  which includes the handles. Many families had a range of different baths for varied purposes.

There is an odd looking loop on the bath. It’s an added soap tray.

This bath dates from about 1910 and has a clip on soap tray

Let’s look at the soap.

Microl Soap was a CWS own brand. All these items are in the kitchen at Market Lavington Museum

Microl soap was a Co-op own-brand similar in style to Lifebuoy soap. We don’t have a date for it.

The whole set up was used by the Gale family of The Spring in Market Lavington. You can see it and many other washday artefacts in the kitchen at Market Lavington Museum.

A High Street for Horses

November 9, 2012

These days Market Lavington High Street is dedicated to the motor vehicle but as we have seen it wasn’t always so. Back in the 1950s the car or van was there, but not in vast numbers. If we go back 100 years then the car was virtually unknown. Today’s picture of the High Street dates from that era. It is taken from more or less outside the Co-op looking towards and beyond the crossroads.

Market Lavington High Street about a hundred years ago – A High Street for Horses!

On the left we have the Elisha’s shop and then a group of people surround a pram.

A pram of the period

Beyond the pram was Mr Whitchurch’s drug store and then the Kings Arms – which was receiving a delivery of beer. The dray, of course, was horse drawn.

The dray delivers at the Kings Arms

Beyond the dray is The Red House where James Neate lived. He was a wine and spirit merchant and had a brewery which supplied his own pub – The Brewery Tap on White Street. Further on we look down into Church Street.

On the right side we have Mr Burgess’s shop. He was the photographer and probably took this photo. Outside his shop there’s a small horse drawn wagon. Further down we can make out another horse drawn wagon. This could be outside where the newsagent is now.

Four wheels on the wagon outside Mr Burgess’s shop

What a delightful, if sadly faded,  photo.

A 1911 Directory

November 7, 2012

Directories of all kinds have been produced in the past. Kelly’s directories contained a brief description of each parish followed by a list of ‘private residents’ which, in practice meant the great and the wealthy and then the commercial residents with a description of the nature of their business. The workers – dare one say it – the working classes,  don’t get a mention.

However, such directories were produced more often than the 10 yearly censuses were carried out so they can provide vital information for genealogists..

At Market Lavington Museum we have some whole directories of this type and many copies of the page or so in directories relevant to Market Lavington. This one dates from a census year, 1911.

Let’s start with the village description. Prepare yourself for a good read.

 Now to the listed residents which are split over two pages in the original directory. These have been uploaded at a slightly larger size than normal so will be readable if you click on the picture.

In a Monastery Garden (2)

October 30, 2012

In a Monastery Garden (1) can be seen by clicking here.

Yesterday we looked at Mrs Hobbs memories as written in 1992. Today we’ll look more closely at one of her memories – the Sunday School Outing.

Back in 1912, Mrs Hobbs was known as Betty Pike although her real name never was Betty. It was a nickname conferred on her as a little baby and it stayed with her right through life. But her surname was Pike – daughter of George and his wife Mary Ann.

Sunday School outings were huge events back in those years before the First World War. The mass forms of entertainment we have today were unknown and a lovely day out was something people looked forward to and savoured long after the day had come and gone.

The chosen destinations for the Congregational Church were often Marsh’s Tea Gardens at Bratton or the Monastery Gardens at Edington. In 1912 the outing went to Edington.

It is hard for us to imagine the logistics these days. Huge numbers – maybe a couple of hundred people made the trip. Transport was by farm cart or wagon, equipped with temporary seats. These would have trundled along at walking pace, making the journey take a goodly part of the morning. Once there it was time to enjoy yourself.

George Pike rows members of Market Lavington Congregational Church on Edington Lake in 1912

Here we see Mrs Hobbs’s father, George Pike taking people out in a rowing boat on the lake at Edington.

It’s a long shot that the other occupants of this boat will be recognised, but do let us know if you can.

High Street – then and now

October 27, 2012

Today we are going to compare two photos of the High Street in Market Lavington, both taken from the crossroads and both in colour.

The first dates from about 1910. The original photo would have been monochrome, but an artist has added colour. No doubt it is reasonably correct, but cannot be assumed to be as good as a colour photo.

Market Lavington High Street in 1910

Market Lavington High Street in 2012

The big change, over 100 years, is that the building on the left in the 1910 picture has gone. That went to improve visibility for motorists, at the crossroads. It was demolished in the 1930s.

So, in the new picture, taken on 20th October 2012, the first building on the left is the Post Office. This is half hidden in the older shot.

Otherwise, the buildings all look much the same. Some chimneys have been removed and of course, in some cases, the use of a building has changed.

The other big difference is in people and cars. Back in 1910, the photographer probably organised the people in the photo. Clearly, standing on the road at the main intersection in Market Lavington was no problem. Wheeled transport is represented by a bicycle and a pram.

In 2012, the photographer had to take extreme care and accept very little time to line up the shot before dashing back to the safety of the pavement. There are some chance people in the photo. There is also a line of parked cars. Yellow lines indicate areas where parking is not allowed.

I think we can be certain that should a time traveller arrive from 1910, he’d recognise the scene straight away.

Grandma Doubleday’s Jelly Mould

October 21, 2012

It is not the first time that the Doubledays have featured on these pages. You can click here to read about Mrs Doubleday – born Ellen Maria White who is our Grandma Doubleday.

Today we feature one of her domestic artefacts – a jelly mould. It is believed to date from about 1910. This means it would have been bought in Wellingborough or Brixworth in Northamptonshire and would have come to Market Lavington when the family moved here. Almost certainly, the mould moved to Trowbridge for it was given to the museum by a grandson of Mrs Doubleday who lived there.

Grandma Doubleday’s jelly mould – at Market Lavington Museum

This mould is made of glazed earthenware and would produce a fluted product with a flower motif on top.

The mould's interest is, in part, due to its former owner

Some of us like to imagine that a recipe that came from another grandson of Mrs Doubleday might have been made in this mould. The recipe for Grandma Doubleday’s Potted Meat appeared in a 1970s publication which was fund raising for glazing at St Mary’s Market Lavington. This recipe has become a winner at our Museum Miscellany events each year.

Grandma Doubleday’s recipe for potted meat

We are informed by cooks who know that almost certainly a mould like this one, with its fancy decorations, would have been used for sweet jellies. But we can dream quite happily of the potted meat!