Sunday, 4 December 2011
A walk down memory (Pottery) lane
When she was twelve years old she was 'put into service' where she worked as a scullery maid doing very menial tasks including scrubbing floors, stoves, sinks and dishes for a mere pittance of about one shilling a week and a room in the attic and where she would have only had a few hours off each week. By the time she was 18 she was working for a household in Earls Court Road as a cook. She married in 1894 to Charles, a carman (another story for another time) and raised ten children of her own in slightly more improved but similar conditions to that of her own childhood in the same area around Pottery Lane. She was supposedly estranged from her mother in later years - was this because she couldn't forgive her mother from keeping her illegitimacy and the workhouse from her? or maybe that she never knew who her father was (I do!) - but this is all conjecture and we will never know the truth. Fanny died aged 90 years old in 1963.
My discoveries and trip gave me a snapshot of the lives of those who went before me and an insight into what life would have been like in 'Dickensian' London.