William Brand

Brooms for the 17th and 18th century

28 posts in this topic

As pirates we don't often think of the mundane tools of the day to day laborer, especially a tool we might see more of on land, but the subject of brooms has come up for kit. Now in my limited research of brooms I've come across numerous examples in Dutch paintings that show what is listed as a broom, though a stubby one either from short construction or too much use. See below.

The_Cottage_Dooryard-1673-Adriaen_van_Ostade.jpg

As you can see it looks like more of a scrubbing tool, which makes sense on heavy wood floors and stone. A similar broom with more 'bristle' can be seen in the painting Interior of Oude Kerk in the lower left part of the image, but I can't find a good example of the painting.

The long bristle broom that we think of today appears to have entered the scene in the colonies in the late 1700s, but as I said, I welcome any Broom specialists to post examples from the period.

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http://www.thelocal.de/society/20090527-19547.html

19547.jpg

"Perfectly preserved 300-year-old broom found in monk latrine

Published: 27 May 09 17:13 CET

Online: http://www.thelocal.de/society/20090527-19547.html

Bringing new meaning to the phrase “Holy crap,” a perfectly preserved 300-year-old broom has been found in a Benedictine monastery latrine in Paderborn, city archaeologist Sven Spiong told The Local on Wednesday.

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Archaeologists from the Westphalia-Lippe regional authority had just finished excavating an area under the St. Ulrich Church monastery for a new underground parking facility, when one of the construction workers detected a pungent smell.

The men had unearthed the contents of a latrine dating from the 1700s, but the church building itself dates back to before 1200.

“The contents were preserved because the area was air-tight,” Spiong said.

While searching through the moist organic material, the excavation team found several ordinary objects that wouldn’t normally survive for centuries.

“It was really exciting,” Spiong, who has been Paderborn’s city archaeologist since 2003, told The Local. “This is the oldest broom ever found in the region. Natural materials like leather and wood usually don’t survive the elements.”

The 25-centimetre twig broom bound with bast fibre, along with several other objects like a spindle, a wooden bobbin, hazelnut shells and cherry pits will be sent to the regional conservation centre in Münster on Thursday.

Spiong said he hopes the objects will go on display at the St. Ulrich Church, or the Gaukirche, but said they may also find a place in the local archaeology museum.

Regional archaeology spokeswoman Stefanie Mosch told The Local that ordinary objects provide a special window into everyday life in the past.

“It’s fascinating to see that they used practically the same brooms we use today,” she said.

Kristen Allen (kristen.allen@thelocal.de)"

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In this painting (Bruegel Proverbs, 1559) you can see the broom sticking out the window in the upper left hand corner of the image.

Bruegel_Proverbs.jpg

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LouisXVbroomseller.jpg Broom seller reign of Louis XV

LaCrieusedeBaletsafter1674.jpg sorry can't blow this one up more, but circa 1674

holmes1686.jpg circa 1686

Edited by Capt. Sterling

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Amazing find William.

These look very similar to some that I saw when I was in Scotland back in the early 90's.

I remember going up to the Caledonian Mountains and similar looking brooms were placed in secured spots througout the walking paths of the forest.

When I asked them why these brooms were there, the ranger informed us that they were 'fire brooms' and they work surprisingly well!

Here is a hawker selling his brooms (18th Century)

broomPeddlercolor2.jpg

Here is an example of a birch broom - which are still being made today.

brchbroom.jpg

Edited by Cheeky Actress

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and one more... lower left hand corner...

MIERIS_Willem_The_Spinner.jpg

The Spinner by Mieris

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Just one site (found by Google) selling that style of broom.

http://robtaborn.homestead.com/broomshop.html

(I'm posting that one b/c the catchy jig it is playing.)

Oh you beat me to it, Tartan Jack! But the link is much appreciated. I know that Haunting Lily was looking for someone who sold period brooms. Thank you for posting the link.

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I know that Haunting Lily was looking for someone who sold period brooms. Thank you for posting the link.

It looks like the great broom search may be over. :D

William, thanks again for starting this topic and thanks everyone for all the great pics and links.

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Well . . .

Your welcome!

(I just googled "birch broom" and that was one of the first selling sites to pop-up. I know NOTHING about them!)

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Most interesting. Never really thought about using the broom at pirate events. I suppose I could see it whenever I get some mock persian-like rugs to have a period style broom. I've one already (granted it's more a hollow bamboo handle).

Hmmm... does get one thinking.

Thanks mates.

~Lady B

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Come to PIP and you'll know why I've been looking for a broom. Half the beach was in the tent, lol

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Girl with a Broom by Rembrandt.

girl_with_a_broom.jpeg

The Love Letter by Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675)

DutchMaster3.JPG

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not a bad idea at that. I have that persian rug being used now in my period tent and I imagine the dust is covering it already.

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There is a fantastic place in Arkansas called the Ozark Folk Center (http://www.ozarkfolkcenter.com/) They have craftsmen selling period wares there. We picked up this broom from the broom maker:

3660060840_9f93861f36.jpg3659262921_19aa65400c.jpg3660060974_b48f96fb13.jpg

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You know . . .

On the Blue Ridge Parkway, just on the north side of Asheville, there is a Folk Art Center. There are all sorts of people there selling rustic-type stuff. I think there was a broom maker there in times I've been there.

Next time I'm up there, I'll check, see, and get contact info.

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It's easy to find makers of classic brooms. There are numerous Amish broom makers online. Here are just two of the many links I've found...

http://www.hensonbrooms.com/handmade-brooms.html

http://www.cohassetcolonials.com/catalog/v...ace-Broom/42C33

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Guess what William? There is a broom-maker here in Warsaw, he does all types from the more modern wire-wrapped straw brooms, to the more period correct woven/braided top ones. We have one here on the wall by the fireplace, I'll try to get some photos of it, and the little whisk one we use for the hearth later today. It looks just like the ones in the broom-sellers picture, and similar but not multi-colored, to the one in CaptMac's picture. If you are coming through in December, I'm sure we can arrange to have one here for you to take along.

miscstuff001-1.jpg

Here are ours, he can trim them of leave them like this, he offers several options.

Bo

Edited by Capt. Bo of the WTF co.

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When I was up in the Toronto area of Canada a few years back, my friend took me to a place similar to Amish style living (I can't remember the name of the people there) with stores to look through. There was a broom maker there making some great stuff plus there were a few antiques around for sale too.

At Christmas time Albertson's stores here in S. Calif. were selling cinnamon brooms, which I bought one. Unfortunately my cats thought it was great for chewing on....it's now outside the front door.

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Another item added to the list. Hmmm, well, the Hide doesn't have a floor, maybe I don't need a broom ...yet. lol

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I think you are talking about Elmira, Ontario. It is about a one hour drive outside of Toronto. Nice place for a day trip from Toronto, used to go out for an afternoon at least every couple of years....

When I was up in the Toronto area of Canada a few years back, my friend took me to a place similar to Amish style living (I can't remember the name of the people there) with stores to look through. There was a broom maker there making some great stuff plus there were a few antiques around for sale too.

At Christmas time Albertson's stores here in S. Calif. were selling cinnamon brooms, which I bought one. Unfortunately my cats thought it was great for chewing on....it's now outside the front door.

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The next time we are sitting around a campfire drinking, remind me to tell you my house hunting story.

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Anyone know anything about the history of corn husk brooms? I am making one, but I can't find any real, solid history saying "it was used at this time..."

Here http://books.google.com/books?id=ZFZU5mfn2KEC&pg=PA280&lpg=PA280&dq=corn+husk+broom+history&source=bl&ots=RERPUG7Ktj&sig=hNEUWKXCY-YUn2d_SFrQS61LuTc&hl=en&ei=kfZtSveiNYq6lAeBwIi2Ag&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1 only mentions the use of corn husks to secure the other broom parts together... Hmm....

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Well, if I can't find a job, then I'll just have to make one! I will be making and selling brooms in the near future, stay tuned for more details, setting-up shop in progress now.

 

Bo

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Excellent!  It will be good to have a craftsman that we know.  

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