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The Ghost Map

Author(s): Gregory Vogt, Ed.D.

Water Use

A typical home consisted of a single room in which one or more families lived. Cooking and heating was done with wood or coal in a fireplace or grill. The air was smoky. Windows provided light during the day and candles were used at night.

Food had to be eaten quickly because leftovers soon became rancid. Washing was done in tubs with water carried in from the pumps. Wastewater was dumped back on to the streets.

Beneath warped boards in the cellars were cesspits that served as toilets. Cesspits were circular, brick-lined holes about 6 feet across and 10 feet deep. Urine and fecal matter collected there until overflowing. The smell was terrible.

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