But folks were also weary of war deprivations and ready to spend their war bond investments. The Naperville Clarion complained that “There probably never was such a wild orgy of buying as at the present moment.”
One favorite expense was to invest in an electric washing machine to lighten the load for women. If you look at the ad for the Crystal Washer, which was made by Mallory Industries, you can see the Mallory logo between the washer’s legs. The image depicts a man lifting a bundle of clothes off the back of a kneeling woman. Make of that what you will.
In these early electric washer/wringers, the motor automatically agitated clothes in the washer. But then you needed to wring out the wash water, put the damp clothes in a basket, empty the washer, refill with clean water, and run the electric agitator again to rinse out the soap. If you were washing whites, you might have bluing rinse as well. One more wringing later, you were finally ready to hang your clothes in the yard to dry before ironing and folding. So much easier!
This ad for a Crystal Washer and Wringer is from the Naperville Clarion newspaper for Hillegas Hardware. Hillegas and Reich opened a hardware store in downtown Naperville in 1882 in the building where Frankie’s Blue Room and Features Bar and Grill is today. Apparently before the year ended the store became
Rassweiler Hardware, but the January advertisement is definitely still identifying it as Hillegas Hardware, the place you can buy your wife a Crystal washing machine.