Girls washing laundry in metal basins on Glasgow Green, early 20th century. One of them has hung her woollen shawl over the railings. A well-dressed woman and boy are strolling on the path. The photograph was probably taken by Glasgow's Chief Sanitary Inspector Peter Fyfe in 1916.
The nearby Greenhead Public Baths and Washing-house opened in 1878, but some families prefered to follow tradition (perhaps for reasons of economy) and do their washing outdoors on the green. These girls are rubbing clothes on the corrugated metal surfaces of their wash boards to help loosen dirt and stains. Once clean, clothes could be spread on the grass to dry, or hung up on the public washing lines.
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums
girls, Glasgow Green, laundry, parks, tubs, washboards, washing, women