I pickedup in a second hand bookshop a book on "How To Keep House," by Mrs C
S Peel, dated 1902, which contains some comments on health care and
prevention of illness, including the importance of your drains, which I
thought might be of interest:
"Everyone will agree that it is more important for a house to be sanitary
than to be beautiful ... for upon this depends our health, our comfort, and
our very lives...
No sewgae system has been devised which is not apt to get out of order at
some time. Smells are usually the first sign of such derangement, but not
invariably so. Sore throats are a furtehr and more unpleasant item of
evidence, while blood-poisoning and typhoid are the worst...
It is only of late years that it has been fully recognised how much sunlight
affects our health, not only by the vigour that it gives to our persons, but
by destroying the germs of disease that are everywhere abroad. It is
therefore necessary to have as much light in all parts of our houses as
possible, and to avoid keeping out the beneficial rays of the sun by heavy
curtains and thick window blinds...
As with light so also with air... all windows, both in bed and sitting
rooms, should be open for as long a time as possible every day...
In the case of infectious diseases... proper precautionary measures shpuld
be taken to prevent the spread of the disease among the unaffected
inmates... Disnifecting after the illness is over is now usually done by the
sanitary authority; but all wall-papers in the infected houses must be
carefully stripped, and not covered up by new ones...
Lastly, it is of the greatest imposrtance to see that the servants are
housed among sanitary surroundings; for, having been accustomed to a less
hygienic mode of living at home, they are apt to ignore some of the simple
but highly important rules of health. Their rooms should be properly
ventilated, even against their will, and it should be seen to that their
quarters are kept as clean, dry, light and fresh as the other portions of
At the end among the advertisements for other books is one entitled "From
Cradle To School", by Mrs Ada S Ballin, which is described as "An
indepensable manual for mothers, dealing with questions of their own health
and the health management and up-bringing of their children." It dealt with
subjects including vaccination and sickness, and quoted reviews call it
"quite a blessing to mothers", and say "No mother and no nurse should be
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