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Thread: would you live like it was the year 1800

  1. #21
    Junior Member
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    Jan 2011
    Interesting thread. My only experience living this way was in the 1970s where myself and then husband built and lived in a little A frame a half mile off the road in the North East US. The winters are harsh there, but we had a wood stove that we used for heat and cooking and only had a hole in the ground for a toilet (!) We carried our water in but did have a place to go to shower and wash clothes, so that was a cheat. We did grow all our own food including wheat which I made bread from and we even made maple syrup one time. It was so delicious. But then a baby came along and it got more and more difficult. I got stuck in a snow drift one afternoon while holding the baby and not long after that we moved closer to the road to an apartment. But it was a great experience for a year or two. I do remember one time we had a really bad torrential rains and I was convinced the A frame was going to float away carrying me and the baby. I was terrified while my then husband just laughed at me! I guess I was a bit overly anxious. Now that I'm 61 I can see the romance in it but the thing I would miss most is running water. I love to be able to clean my teeth (the ones I have left) and take a bath every day!

  2. #22
    Senior Member Acorn's Avatar
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    Oct 2011
    I remember watching Frontier House and one of the women and her daughters were besides themselves over not being able to bring cosmetics along. Actually in tears over this.
    No, I wouldn't want to go back. Plumbing and anesthesia are high on my list in terms of quality of life. I'm too scarred from watching a show about John Adams and learning his daughter had breast cancer surgery without anesthesia.

  3. #23
    Senior Member Selah's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
    Mohave Valley, Arizona, U.S.A.
    Heck, no! Jeez, live in a time of legal slavery, inability to vote or have a bank account, and have to wear dresses and bonnets all the time? No tampons or indoor running water? No contraception? Doctors not knowing they ought to wash their hands before delivering babies, hence greatly increasing my risk of dying in childbirth? OTC snake oil medicines laced with cocaine, alcohol, and sometimes heroin? FORGET IT!

  4. #24
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    out in the sticks by Abilene, KS
    Quote Originally Posted by setis View Post
    Okay! Now that we have answered that question. Alot of negativity. I find that often. The second part of that question is, Would you live like it was 1800 with the technology of today? I live what is considered by most "primative". I only have grid electric service during the winter through a prepaid service. I go to the library when transportation is available.I recycle water,"gray" water to water my garden and yard,flush my toilet. I have lights,12 volt,my radio is capable of running non stop 24hr-365 free now. I have tv also 12 volt. I grow a few items. Area not condusive to growing ground hard ws a horse pasture.When was working not enough time on unemployment not enough money. The hardest part is most things it takes two,like bleeding the brakes on the vehicle to repair them.I am 61. I am in almost good shape. Have some medical most my family would be 6 under before my age. I have worked as a machinist for over 30 years and it is not sitting at a desk. Whole bunch of walking and lifting. I am planning to retire this year so I can work in the garden as much as I can increase my crop.City gives away mulch which I am usually at work. Had been without a vehicle for 5 years. Now have a van and a bus. Bus is going to be my home in a couple years. When I get done at the home i am in now remodel and garden. I plan to tavel this country and see what I have not. I also plan to create gardens with veggies and flowers that will grow and regrow each spring. I have a garden of volunteer from seeds left from previous gardens. a Setis version of Johnny Appleseed. So who wants to live Like it was the year 1800 today.
    I'm with ya! Right now we're doing the self sufficient thing, never worked so hard in our lives, but we've never been happier! We're also kicking around the idea of selling the house eventually and doing some kind of full time RV'ing.
    My lame blog:
    Eco Friendly Tightwaddery and the Fine Art of Substitution

  5. #25
    Senior Member ctg492's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Wow that was an adventure! I really do envy you for having that time to remember. Did you do this for the experience or financial reasons? How did you family/friends react to your life style?
    Would I like to live this way forever, no. Modern things are needed and life has been extended because of them like you said. I will say as a Dreamer, I would like to try it for a summer in the rural area up north. Just to see how I do, would I cave and quit? Or would I at the end of summer say to myself I Did IT! Notice I say summer, winter would be brutal with snow and frozen river, I would cave first night!
    I try small goals often for myself, they are drastic changes in one daily process. I set a time frame one week/one month. l do this to see IF I can do them if I "had" to in life. I have not failed yet, most I go back to my old ways, some I keep and never look back. Husband never jumps on board with my "silly" goals. So since there are two of us, I can hang up the idea of drastic changes.

  6. #26
    Senior Member HappyHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Mid Atlantic coast after 30 years in No CA
    Great topic...the premise is one that may come to pass if we continue to exhaust our resources and our population keeps growing (anyone read the book, "Overshoot?"). With more natural disasters (floods in Thailand now destroying vast crops of rice, for example), we soon may need to become much more self-sufficient and live more simply.

    My new Kindle sci-fi post-apocalyptic novel, Falling Through Time, explores this topic. An accidental time traveler from 2012 finds herself in a future world of 2084. Her new community has been founded by immigrants from the Sierra Club and the Union of Concerned Scientists, so they're technologically sophisticated, but deliberately simple in their small footprint lifestyle. They've selected the best and discarded the rest of the noise and clutter.

    And yes, I think living close to nature and the land with some of the mod cons and growing some of our food so it's "clean" and not genetically modified, has much appeal. Paramount for me, personally, would be a certain level of comfort in cold, wet, and hot weather, and the ability to take a hot shower a couple of times a week. And with other people is crucial to my mental and social well-being. A big supply of books and music-making would be necessary. TV could go by the wayside. Videos would be nice...but making your own entertainment/activities by contra-dancing, music-making, group canning, quilting, barn-raising type activities would be cool.

    Hope you find the right partner, OP. I'm already in a committed relationship. I bet she's out there for you...
    peaceful, easy feeling

  7. #27
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by Acorn View Post
    Plumbing and anesthesia are high on my list in terms of quality of life. I'm too scarred from watching a show about John Adams and learning his daughter had breast cancer surgery without anesthesia.
    That was the first thing that I thought of when I read the topic.

    Surgery without anesthesia would be a deal breaker for me.

  8. #28
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Because I truly feel we need to backpedal as a civilization, I do sometimes feel like I would like to just go back to the pre-industrialized basics. Of course, I am not willing to trade off the benefits of modern society to do that, really.

    One of the things I like about Peace Pilgrim is that she so clearly illustrated what people really "need." She lived very happily with a toothbrush in her pocket and rubber soles on her feet. She said she stopped getting sick when she escaped the rat race. She had purpose and drive. And she was killed, ironically, by a car.

    So, the question is, not would you want to go back in time, but what are you willing to give up in order to derive the benefits of that way of life? No one says we have to live in a 2,000 square foot home, that we have to have a car, that we have to be stressed at our jobs. There are no victims here, only volunteers.

    The difficulty is in the choices, IMHO.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town

  9. #29
    Senior Member Greg44's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Pacific Northwest
    Short answer is NO!

    Being a Mormon, I have always joked about being a handcart pioneer -- "Bro. Brigham, Iowa looks really good, dotcha think -- I heard they can grow good corn here"! In otherwords I would have not been a very good pioneer to the Salt Lake Valley. To this day I am not fond of camping and I think that is the closest thing we have today that sorta resembles living in the 1800's.!

  10. #30
    Love reading everyone's entries/thoughts!

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