Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Creature Comforts

Nowadays, it's only a matter of sliding a dial or a click or two, and either you fire up the furnace or your air conditioner kicks to life to make your home a comfortable place to live. Once upon a time not so long ago, no such possibility existed. Even in Biblical times, and I'm sure before, kings had summer palaces up in the mountains or by the seaside. Wherever the temperatures weren't so uncomfortable in the summer.

The less fortunate had no choice but to make do with passive cooling. If one could afford a slave to move a fan back and forth, that might be considered active, but most of those folks planned ahead in the construction of their homes to take advantage of the maximum benefit of any air movement----build on a hilltop, high ceilings, transoms above interior doors, and/or big shaded windows.

Henry Buckmeyer in my Texas Romance Family Saga built Sue's house three stories high on a hill with an open three-story interior hallway that allowed heat to rise and escape through the roof's louvered vents.His system definitely couldn't compare with our modern day air conditioners, but it moved air. Heat rises. Certainly made a Texas summer more comfortable.

While that worked well for hundred degree days, it posed more of a problem when temperatures fell. Rooms with ten-foot ceilings proved hard to heat, so those attic louvers were closed and covered, battened down to keep the heat in. Each room had its own fireplace. That caused another problem . . . keeping the wood box full.

 These days, cutting tree trunks with a chainsaw and splitting the chunks with a gas-powered log-splitter would take one man a solid month to cut, split, and stack enough wood to heat Henry's house over the winter.

But with two men using cross saws, wedges, sledges,  and hand axes, chopping that same amount, would keep a fair-sized crew of men busy more than a month.

Next time your electrical power goes down, leaving you without heat or air conditioning, think about those rugged individuals who settled this great country in spite of its weather.

Fun fact: Before the widespread use of air conditioning in the 1960s, Texas----one of the warmer states----boasted a population of a million people. Now, we have over eighteen million!   


TOMORROW! The Locket & Lace Collection, ten books from nine authors (all bloggers here) sponsored by Sweet Americana Sweethearts Blog is hosting a Cover Reveal Extravaganza from 10 am until 8pm CST with games and prizes all day! And you're invited! Click over now and click "Going"!
The attendee who invites the most friends who come (be sure to tell them to mention your name! :) we're awarding a $20 Amazon Gift Card! Grand prize for the party is a Kindle Fire----with all the stories in the collection! You just can't miss this party! See you there! 

  BIO: Caryl McAdoo prays her story brings God glory, and a quick scroll through her novels’ rankings by Christian readers attests to the Father’s faithfulness. She loves writing almost as much as singing the new songs He gives her—look her up on YouTube to hear a few. Her high school sweetheart husband won her heart fifty-one years ago, and now they share four children and seventeen grandsugars. Ron and Caryl live in the woods south of Clarksville, seat of Red River County in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door. 

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  1. Your cover above reminds me of all the warm summer days I spent on a wagon stacking bales.

  2. This was such a fun book to read!