Imagine life without electricity, not just a brief power outage. We all know how inconvenient life becomes when our electricity is out for only a few hours. How hard it is to remember for that short period of time that the light switch will not produce instant light, the hair dryer will not immediately blow dry our hair, or that we can't even run water into our homes. Our homes and lives have become so dependent on electricity it is really hard to imagine everything that would change without it.
Lifestyles in our own Ozark Mountain region have changed dramatically with the invention of electricity and its establishment into our everyday lives. Have you ever noticed a log cabin built at the very top of a high mountain where it would have a beautiful view? Probably not. Locations were chosen for homes because of accessibility to water, preferably a big spring. Having your home close to a spring meant having cold milk, a cool watermelon in the summer, and plenty of drinking water. Before electricity, a "spring box" would be constructed where the cool spring water would run into it and be deep enough to cover containers of milk, butter, etc. I'm convinced that a spring located close to your home was just about one of the biggest luxuries in those days. Remember, without electricity there were no electric cattle waterers. Drawing water from the well by hand to water a herd of cattle and horses would now seem an impossible task.
Can we really imagine doing laundry without electricity? Carrying water from the spring, or drawing enough water from the hand-dug water well could prove to quite a day's chore. We really can't imagine the time and effort put into doing a mere "load of laundry" before our electric washers and dryers.
Homes were built lower in valleys instead of hilltops also because of heating and cooling. Remember, there were no air conditioners or fans to create the perfect breeze on a hot summer day. Also, during the winter the... [continues]
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