The History of Laundry

Breathing mobile washer clothes washing history laundry history hand wash clothing portable laundryThroughout history, millions upon millions of individuals have engaged in the task of doing laundry, or washing their garments. Considered to be one of the oldest and easiest of domestic tasks, it once took an immense amount of time and energy. As time progressed, individuals developed easier methods of doing laundry that did not put so much strain on their time and on their bodies. In this guide, you will be provided with a general overview of the history of laundry. Perhaps, by reading this, you will gain a newfound respect and appreciation for the ease of today’s washing tasks.

Natural Innovation

Prior to the 1800s, people put the highest level of time and effort into doing laundry. Garments and other items – such as cloth diapers and bedding pieces  were hauled to the nearest body of water. Once at the water, people doing the laundry would use specially-developed tools (usually, ones that they created themselves) to clean the garments and other fabric pieces. Examples of the most commonly utilized included laundry bats, scrub boards, and even rocks of various sizes. In some instances, the only “tools” used were the hands and the feet. Many would slap at the clothes, while others would stomp over their garments  with their feet.

Washing by hand is still extremely common around the world. Dhobi  in India are “wash men” or “wash women” and wash clothing by beating it on the ground.

The Development of Laundry Cleansing Agents

As time progressed, individuals recognized a need for something more – in terms of cleaning clothes and other types of fabrics. While abrasive methods seemed to be effective at getting clothing “fresh,”  many found that these failed in terms of stain removal and keeping fabric from wearing out. An ancient legend from the Romans, referred to as “Mount Sapo” was the foundation for the name “soap”. It is said that the local women would gather the mixture of the animal fat and ashes that would wash down near the Tiber River and use it to wash their laundry. In time, many would start to mix ashes, animal fats, and lye in order to create a soap that could be used to do laundry. Unfortunately, only higher income people could afford these soaps.

The Washing Machine

In the year 1787, a man by the name of Edward Beetham created the “Washing Mill”, one of the first washing machines created for laundry. This was very expensive and cleaned fabrics by placing pressure on the clothing. Although the cleaning powers associated with these devices were too expensive for most and not enough for others. In the year of 1797, the scrubbing board emerged. This was one of the most popular  of washing devices. By the early 1900s, several washing machines for laundry emerged. Many enjoyed the convenience and ease that came with the machines; however, it would not be for several years yet that people would start to see the problems associated with using washing machines.

Similar designs have been used for hand washing for generations and were the inspiration behind The Breathing Mobile Washer and improving on those designs.

Less is Best

The standard washing machine has resulted in many complications. For instance, even the most efficient machines still cost quite a bit to operate. The manufacturing process of these devices has detrimentally impacted the environment. The soaps, fabric softeners, and detergents have polluted the ground and have made their way into our water sources. Washing machines – while easy than ever to use and very convenient – are detrimental to our homes,  wallets, and environment. The history of laundry has taught us one thing; that is, less is best. For those in search of an eco-friendly laundry device that will save your clothes, your time, your money, and your world, opt for the Breathing Mobile Washer.