Vanished Phrases and Words

It can be very interesting to look for words and phrases not used very much in the 21st century. Yet these words would have been common for your ancestors.

There was Hassock or what is more common to say an ottoman (a seat for your feet when in a chair). Also at one time, they were called ‘tuffet’.

For sure this word of ‘perambulator’ is now never used. They are what today is called a baby carriage or stroller. A similar older term was ‘buggies’.

A very cheap fabric used for clothing by frontier settlers and pioneers or people not having much money. It was a course wool and flax fabric and called ‘Linsey Woolsey’. It was a scratchy fabric and took awhile to get worn in.

Spanish sailors used the word ‘stevedore’ to mean someone who unloaded ships. It also came to mean someone who owned his own ship and transports goods, but hires dockworkers to do the manual lifting. Today it can be used to refer to a large shipping company rather than the workers. You just might see this word written as an ancestor’s occupation.

A special upgraded type of tire for a car was called ‘whitewalls’. Just like it sounds a white band around the black tire. They were hard to keep clean. Look at old photos to see if the family car had whitewalls.

‘Clabber milk’ is one of those farm products that has fallen well out of use since we rely on store-bought dairy products and clabber milk isn’t something you’ll find at the supermarket. This fermented product bears some similarities to yogurt or kefir, but is the result of spontaneous fermentation. During pioneer days clabber milk was eaten for breakfast or a snack (sometimes with jam or fruit) and was also strained to separate the curds from the whey to make cottage cheese.

When soda bottles became popular, so did a special tool called ‘handy-dandy’. It was a bottle opener on one end and the other end could re-cap the lid of the small bottle. Most people only drank a small portion of the soda to save the rest for later. So it was recapped. Handy-dandy was a popular phrase for anything very useful.

Photo: A Handy-dandy

Related Blogs:

Quaint Sayings

Funny Sayings by Your Ancestors

Quaint Sayings

Origins of Sayings

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