The Victorian Bedroom is set up as it might have been in the late 1800’s. All of the furniture is handmade. A large assortment of personal items that people used to wear and use in earlier times are displayed around the room.
When the house was home to the Presbyterian minister and his family, there was no indoor plumbing. Water to wash up came from a pitcher and a basin was the sink.
This pitcher, the basin and another companion piece, the covered soap dish, all came from Isabel Storie Day's (1830-1915) home. Her house was built in 1860 on the Somerville-Wegatchie Cross Road.
No indoor plumbing, also meant midnight trips to an outdoor privy. A chamber pot was kept in the bedroom to save a trip outside. Once used, they had to emptied and cleaned with carbolic soap.
In 1855, Chicago becomes the first large American city to build a comprehensive sewer system. But in small towns, most had an outdoor privy. Chamber pots were still to be found under beds because of the convenience. But still, many houses built in Victorian times remained without an inside toilet until the 1950s.
Victorian Bedroom Docent: Katie Pistolesi