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Jersey City And Its Historic Sites

By Harriet Phillips Eaton
Published 1899

This Web version, edited by GET NJ

Spinning and Weaving

During the first quarter of this century, wool from their sheep was spun and wove at home; the spinning was done by the women of the family, sometimes assisted by young women who "went out spinning." Men went about to do the weaving. On some places there were weave houses, in others there was a weave room in the cellar. When the cloth was woven it was usually dyed blue ; a blue dye tub being kept to dye the stocking yarn and cloth. Later the cloth was sent to the fullers, then tailoresses came to the house and made it up-into clothing for both men and women.

The women went to New York to market, carrying butter and eggs to sell, and there are traditions in some families of their avoiding the "Mill and Church Road" on their return, and climbing over the rocks, in the long walk from the ferry, fearing that they might be robbed of their store of silver dollars, carried in the large pocket, fastened about the waist and worn under the dress skirt.

A story is told of a very philosophic old lady who sold buttermilk which her customers accused her of diluting with water. The proceeds she invested in a silver tankard. Upon her return from New York in a row-boat across the river, it was so rough that in the rocking of the boat the parcel with the tankard fell overboard and was lost. "Well," exclaimed the old lady, "let it go, it came from the water and has gone back to the water."

Table of Contents

Jersey City History
Your Ancestors' Story
Asbury Park
Bruce Springsteen's Jersey Shore Rock Haven!

The Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and The Central Railroad Terminal
Visit Liberty State Park!

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297 Griffith St.
Jersey City, NJ 07307