The 1900’s & Easter

Here are some short things I translated or paraphrased from bits of early 1900’s newspapers, plus some misc. stuff about bootleggers in America. (EDIT 2015: These were translated sometime before 2013, so my language skills were a lot worse; be warned.)

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From Oyggjarnar, 1899: (Faroese newspaper – loosely translated)

It was a Swedish man, who first came upon the way to use ice to keep milk cold in the summertime, and thus get more and better butter. The Danes took this, and then the ice-keeping (or ice-cellars) became a normal part of their households. The milk-professor Thomas Riise Segelcke did a lot to better the ice-keeping in the Danish kingdom; but most known around the world would be the scholar at the country farming school N. J. Ford (Note: can’t find anything about Ford, might have translated it wrong). He found out through rigorous testing, which ice could be taken and kept best and cheapest, and through his work he’s ensured that his name won’t be forgotten as long as Danish farmers exist. While the Swedes have saved the ice by burying it under sawdust, in Denmark they found it better to store it in ice-houses. Those who find that there is no ice nearby, can go into the ice-house and get some.

(Some places in Sweden also adopted ice-houses, such as the one here which was built in 1825 and which used woodchips/sawdust as insulation. It had a six-metre thick stone wall and became defunct around 1935 when more and more people had gotten the modern fridges with compressors inside them.)

With milk, ice has been most used to drive down the temperature in mortared (brick and plaster) water-wells, which the milk cans were kept in. To keep fish and other meats from rotting or spoiling, it’s most normal to lay a large piece of ice underneath it, so that it saves it, but when done that way the food gets a vatndeyvan (water-logged?) taste, so it is better to use the ice to keep the air that the meat shall be stored in, cold. This has been done in those so-called ”freezing-houses”, where for the most part, salt-blends are used to raise the cold temperature. Such freezing-houses ought to be made under the same roof, and on the outer wall of, the ice-houses (ice-keeping houses). Here, a little room shall be saved, just enough to hang or lay something on the rafters inside the ice-house; but since a lot will need to be saved and multiple trips will be taken out and in often, it’s better to use the freezing-house with the salt-blend.

The hope is that the Faroese may get enough of these ice-houses and freezing houses. To model ourselves after the Icelandic way is nonsense, due to that the earth temperature, wind, weather, and ice-obtaining are different in the Faroes than in Iceland.

1932, Fálkintumblr_n3ro18myq51qmm4ozo2_500n (Icelandic newspaper – loosely translated):

Since the beginning, whenever there have been taxes, bans and tolls on things, there have also been people wishing to bypass them, and thus some people have always found work smuggling items into the country. Examples of items commonly smuggled are cocaine, morphine, opium, gemstones, and tobacco when it is banned in countries.

There are untold tumblr_n3ro18myq51qmm4ozo3_1280ways of smuggling. In countries with long stretches of beaches, such as Norway, the smugglers have an easier time. In the picture of the boat above, many barrels of spirits have been attached to the bottom of the boat. The smuggler has a tool that will loosen the barrels when he wants, so they can float free and it won’t be known which ship they belong to if necessary. They can cast out the barrels when the tide is going out, and get them back when it comes in again.

In America thtumblr_n3ro18myq51qmm4ozo1_500ere are many types of smuggling due to various things being banned. There are even rules about playing sports. See the picture above, where the shopkeeper has bought large melons from Cuba. When he takes them home with him, he pricks them and lets all the juice run out – then he can put rum in them and sell them.

When some home-brewers have places out in the forest and the policemen are looking for them, they put pieces of wood under their shoes in the shape of animal prints, and walk around in circles so that the policemen never see human footprints and lose track of things.

Those who travel via railway or ship are used to having books with them to pass the time. The book tumblr_n3ro18myq51qmm4ozo4_500here in the picture is cut so that the tollman, who is likely to browse through the book a little, is less likely to see its true contents. However this is a very costly method and the risks are large, so it is less often used.
Little Micky Mouse – 1932, Fálkinn (Icelandic – paraphasing translation)

When childrtumblr_n3rxyjKbfd1qmm4ozo1_1280en were going to the cinema-house here during the year, they often saw a black cat, who was called Felix. He was one of the first ”figures” in drawn (animated) films and has already caused millions of children and full-grown adults to laugh. But now Felix is dead and fallen off the screen. He is no longer seen in talking-films but instead another animal is coming, whose name is Micky Mouse. It’s all around the world, like the cat we always saw, so it’s as if the cat has given way to the mouse. …. You all remember the stories about mice, as they try to win one over on the cat.

The artist, whose name is ”Ub Iwerks”, is the father or author of Micky Mouse. He was a normal humour-artist, until one film king in Hollywood said, that he could do what one needed for films. And now this artist certainly has enough to do, as he draws two films a month and when all is said, each film is nearly 10.000 small pictures, so you certainly understand that the man has enough to think about. But especially, no one man can draw 20.000 pictures in only one month and it is true, that UB Iwerks has a large number of other artists in their service that draw their worth towards the ideas. … One of the most fun things about Micky Mouse is how everything in their world is rather like the humans’.

The man who pits ”the sound” into the picture, tries to match the sound to the image again and again. The sound is put onto a gramophone-record and is played together with the picture, and at last Micky Mouse begins to speak.

And so we want to know one thing: Can the artist keep going with such funniness, two times a month year after year, or is another cartoon going to come, when Micky Mouse and its artists are dead, one more interesting and funnier than the mouse was?

The company, which creates Micky Mouse, gets about 250.000 crowns for every picture and it is too little for them to grow quickly. No expensive trips, no luxuries. Ub Iwerks sits in the living room and creates pictures — that is all. We hear that he gets six million crowns per year.


1930s Apple Blossoms and Easter in Wenatchee WA:

“16mm film shot by John Dee and Pearl Wheeler in the apple blossons and Easter in Wantachee WA. John Dee and Pearl are in the beginning but the other people are unknown. If anyone has any information or ideas please let me know.”

If you go to their channel, they have more home-videos like this.
Very interesting parade floats in this one.
The picnic ones I also find interesting.
“At home” and horse skinning while feeding scraps to the dog.

————————— (photos not mine)
tumblr_mimj99q7AJ1qmm4ozo1_500 tumblr_mimj99q7AJ1qmm4ozo2_1280 tumblr_mimj99q7AJ1qmm4ozo3_1280 tumblr_mimj99q7AJ1qmm4ozo4_1280  “Getting ready for Easter in the 1930’s” (photos originally from Life Magazine).

This is very interesting because in America today, Easter is a tiny bit different whereas more of these concepts have stayed the same in some of the Nordics. There are certainly chocolate eggs in America, but to my knowledge they are not filled with candy (if not solid chocolate, they are hollow), are usually much smaller, and have been more replaced by other chocolate shapes (such as bunnies). If you Google “Easter candy” you will see what I mean. In Iceland they do still have chocolate eggs which are hollow and filled with candy (from the beginning, when you buy them at the store), and you can even find much larger ones such as in the photo of the man standing with the kids. They are also decorated with little toys and plastic flowers on the outside.

Swedes don’t have these Icelandic chocolate eggs (and find them extremely strange!), instead they have thick paper or metal eggs that they buy empty and then fill with candy or small presents themselves. In America I haven’t seen either of these types, instead I only know of eggs made of more or less solid chocolate, hollow chocolate eggs with nothing inside, and then tiny plastic eggs that get filled with money or candy (and which are much smaller than the Nordic eggs). Nordic people don’t fill them with money.

In the Nordics, as far as I know, you just give the person the egg or it sits on the table and you snack from it from time to time. In America, the tiny plastic eggs are hidden around the yard (or, if this is a community event, the field) and the kids go on a hunt to find them. This is a very unfair practise, as of course people don’t find the same amount of eggs as each other, and people like me who are almost blind (I have “aniridia”) get lucky if they even find just one.

America does, however, still have people who dress up in bunny outfits and the Nordics don’t do this. They’re typically at parades or community-organized egg-hunts.

tumblr_mimj99q7AJ1qmm4ozo6_1280One other thing not pictured. It used to be more common to draw or paint on hard-boiled eggs – but now in the US thanks to commercialism, the tradition has changed so that it’s more common to dye them by using artificial food colourings (which, by the way, cause cancer and ADHD among other things). Americans put the eggs in a little cup of dye-water using spoons or metal loops to keep only the part they want dyed submerged, and they may draw on the eggs with wax crayons to make patterns where the dye won’t show.

In Sweden at least, the old way is still done – you paint on the eggshells with normal watercolour paints. When I search for the same in English, I find “hard-boil the egg, take the egg out of its shell and then paint on the empty shell” but in Sweden, you paint the shell while the egg is still inside, and then later just peel the shell off and eat the egg.

In the USA, people do easter eggs even if they’re not religious. Religious people will give actual “easter gifts” to their kids though. In the Nordics they have different decorations than in the USA too – for example, they take twigs and glue coloured feathers to them, then those are stuck in pots outside stores, or placed in fences, or set inside the house somewhere. They also use tiny, paper, decorated eggs that have little loops of ribbon on them for the same purpose.