Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Vintage Washing Machine

Wringer on a vintage washing machine
April 2016
Marilyn has a vintage wringer-washing machine on display in the basement bathroom. It makes me smile to see it tucked in the corner.

vintage wringer washing machine
 with agitator 
The machine even has an agitator. After filling the tub with hot water, the laundress would place a foot in the metal stirrup on the front and pull back on the handle to agitate and clean the laundry. Once the pieces are clean, they are placed in the wringer on the back of the machine, and the crank is turned to squeeze out the excess water. Doing laundry with this machine would have been easier than using the wash board leaning against the wall to the left of the machine.

My mother used an electric wringer washer for years, and I have many memories of laundry days. Have you ever used a wringer washer?


  1. This must have been a pretty fancy machine for its day. My grandmother had an old fashioned washtub system to do her laundry. She scrubbed the clothes on the washboard and used a hand wringer, then hung it all on the line to dry. I'm not sure why she didn't have a modern electric washer, because this was in the 60s.

  2. As a matter of fact, I HAVE!!! It was electric, yes - but there were no timers or anything. You just let it fill with water, but your clothes in and let it run for a reasonable amount of time. I gave it 15 - 30 minutes. Then I had to manually set it to drain, refill with rinse water and eventually, after it had drained the last time, run the clothes through the wringer. I was always amazed at just how much water the wringer would squeeze out of the clothes. Worked like a charm.

  3. I never have, but our neighbors had one when I was a little kid.

    I thought it was pretty interesting as a kid. Now I am in amazement that the clothes actually got pretty clean.

  4. I've helped my mother wash clothes in her wringer washer and if my old memory is not off, I think the first one she had was not electric. When she got the electric washer with the wringer it was state-of-the-art! I love the pictures Nancy!

  5. That vintage washer is so neat but I am glad I didn't have to use it. I have never used a wringer washer but my Mom did. Nancy

  6. Nope! never have. I will never get a top load washer again though. It is always off balance. ugh.

  7. I never actually used the machine, but we had an electric wringer washer in a porch off the kitchen when I was a kid. I do remember being scared of it but don't remember why. The is a fun display - so unique and interesting.

  8. Sure have. Hated that dang thing. So glad when I got my first twin tub.

  9. Yes I used to help my Mom...remember the old stick (end of an old broom) that you used to grab hot clothes out of the washer and caught an edge on the wringer so the clothing would go through. I like your sisters style:)

  10. I think my grandmother had an electric wringer although I can't remember ever seeing it in use. On the other hand, Dad was Navy and we only were stationed in Long Beach, outside of LA where grandparents lived, once. I am so happy with our very efficient washers and dryers. I don't think I would have half as much quilting time if I had to do the wash that way!


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