The life of the average servant in the Victorian and Edwardian eras was not, on the whole, as relatively humane as depicted in the wildly popular PBS series Downton Abbey.
In a large house a servant’s duties might be more bearable simply because there more hands to do the work, but in a middle-class household with only one or two maids the work was never-ending and often demeaning. Employers thought nothing of changing a servant’s name if they found it unpleasing. Time off was limited to a few hours a week and was allotted with no thought to the needs of the individual. Servants were generally on duty from 5 AM until bedtime, which might not arrive until 8 or 9 PM. Many worked sixteen to eighteen hours a day. Every aspect of a servant’s life revolved about the needs and whims of their employers.
Despite the indignities and rigors of a servant’s life in those times, however, there is some truth to the fact that their lives were better than those of factory workers and those who took in work at home, not to mention prostitutes. Servants could rise in position through the knowledge gained by living in a well-off household. Their understanding of the world at large was often vastly augmented by their time in service as well. Many learned enough and saved enough to eventually move into the small merchant or office-work class.
Here we see a relatively comfortable servant’s bedroom. In stark contrast to the often dark, moldy rooms occupied by kitchen workers and servants in less agreeable households, this room is painted, carpeted and well-lit by unseen windows. Note the extra underspring in case a second bed is needed for an additional servant, along with the chamber pot that was still common in many well-off households into the early 20th century.
February 26, 2013: An amazing thing happened today - I have been announced as one of the five finalists for a Shorty Award in Art. The Shorty Awards are given to the producers of the best of online social media in a variety of categories and I am honored to be in the running.
August 2, 2012: I am honored to have been showcased in Official Feature Online Entertainment New Magazine in the article "Connecticut’s Artist Expressionist: RC deWinter" highlighting my work in the arts. My thanks to the editors and staff. You can read it here: http://bit.ly/N6z4Yl
May 1, 2012: I am proud and also humbled to have several poems and paintings prominently featured in the First Anniversary Issue of Pink Panther Magazine. See my work on pp 52-57: http://bit.ly/KoMryO Purchase this beautifully produced magazine of women's art and writing here: http://bit.ly/In88Eg Thanks and bright blessings to the marvellous editors of Pink Panther for this extraordinary validation of my work.
April 6, 2012: Thanks to editor/writer Dominic Richardson at ARTbracket for this article on me and my work. http://bit.ly/HrZmDd
January 21, 2012: I am honored to have two of my poems, imprecation and WomanRoots, published in the latest issue of Pink Panther Magazine. The magazine can be purchased here: http://bit.ly/yUcPOM
My October 2011 solo show at the Arts of Tolland Gallery in Connecticut was a great success. I am greatly honored to be the first digital artist invited to exhibit there. My thanks to the Board for all their help before, during and after the 5-week show.
April 29, 2011: I am proud to announce that ABC has licensed four more of my works for use as set decoration on the TV show Desperate Housewives.
I am happy to paint on commission. For more information, please email: email@example.com
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