Our Town Stories discuss life-changing technologies

| March 19, 2018

COSHOCTON – The discussion of last month’s Our Town Stories focused on life-changing technologies. Nine people braved the snow and came to the museum to talk about what invention during their childhood or young adult years changed modern history.

Bob Buxton mentioned that the milking machine was a huge time-saver for farmers in Coshocton County.

“I had friends I went to school with and each one had to milk four cows by hand before they got on the bus,” he said. “We’ve come a long way from them having to milk by hand. I remember my Grandpa Porteus having a spring house and setting milk cans in the water to keep them cold before the milkman came.”

Liz McIntire remembers when she was a teenager in Bakersville, the telephone changed her life.

“I still remember our number was 6814,” said McIntire. “1953 was the year that that happened. I remember party lines too.”

Louise Brode mentioned the washing machine.

“Before that, to do the laundry, you’d have to stay home from school to help do the laundry,” she said. “Rinsing, ringing, hanging on the line, bringing it in, folding it and putting it away took a lot of work.”

McIntire remembers her mother warming water to do the laundry.

“My mother had a copper kettle that she put on the coal furnace to warm the water to wash the clothes,” said McIntire.

John Matis remembers when his family received their first washing machine as well.

“Back then, my mother had to boil everything in water and pump the water,” he said. “When we got our first washing machine, we were in seventh heaven.”

Linda Wells said that the hand-held hair dryer was a big improvement from having to let her hair dry naturally.

“I got my first hand-held hair dryer in the 1960s,” she said. “I can still remember my first one. It was blue with a white cord. I think I still have a picture of it.”

The color TV was a wonder to Sandy Bradford.

“We had one of the first ones,” she said. “My dad always had to adjust it. We had the black and white set, but the color one was special, especially watching the Rose Parade in color. That was special.”

Others also mentioned that there were only about two to three channels you could get on TV and that they played the National Anthem each night before signing off.

Other things mentioned were inside toilets, electric typewriters, erasable paper, and old blue carbon paper.

“I kept some of that blue carbon paper for the longest time,” said Margaret McDowell. “I don’t think you can even buy that anymore.”

She also remembered the first car she had with an air conditioner.

“I remember when we got our first air conditioner in the car,” she said. “It was wonderful. You didn’t have to have the windows down when you drove.”

Other life-changing inventions mentioned included correction ribbon cartridges for typewriters, contacts, and IV drip controls in hospitals.

Our Town Stories meets the second Thursday of the month at noon at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum.

Read more stories like this one in our March – April Boomer Times.

Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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