Published at Friday, 28 June 2019. Kitchen. By Images Collector.
In the southern states, where the climate and sociological conditions differed from the north, the kitchen was often relegated to an outbuilding. On plantations, it was separate from the big house or mansion in much the same way as the feudal kitchen in medieval Europe: the kitchen was operated by slaves in the antebellum years. Their working place was separated from the living area of the masters by the social standards, but more importantly, it was a means to reduce the chance of fire in the main house from kitchen operations.
The idea of standardized was first introduced locally with the Frankfurt kitchen, but later defined new in the "Swedish kitchen" (Svensk köksstandard, Swedish kitchen standard). The equipment used remained a standard for years to come: hot and cold water on tap and a kitchen sink and an electrical or gas stove and oven. Not much later, the refrigerator was added as a standard item. The concept was refined in the "Swedish kitchen" using unit furniture with wooden fronts for the kitchen cabinets. Soon, the concept was amended by the use of smooth synthetic door and drawer fronts, first in white, recalling a sense of cleanliness and alluding to sterile lab or hospital settings, but soon after in more lively colors, too. Some years after the Frankfurt Kitchen, Poggenpohl presented the "reform kitchen" in 1928 with interconnecting cabinets and functional interiors. The reform kitchen was a forerunner to the later unit kitchen and fitted kitchen.
Industrialization also caused social changes. The new factory working class in the cities was housed under generally poor conditions. Whole families lived in small one or two-room apartments in tenement buildings up to six stories high, badly aired and with insufficient lighting. Sometimes, they shared apartments with "night sleepers", unmarried men who paid for a bed at night. The kitchen in such an apartment was often used as a living and sleeping room, and even as a bathroom. Water had to be fetched from wells and heated on the stove. Water pipes were laid only towards the end of the 19th century, and then often only with one tap per building or per story. Brick-and-mortar stoves fired with coal remained the norm until well into the second half of the century. Pots and kitchenware were typically stored on open shelves, and parts of the room could be separated from the rest using simple curtains.
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