The archaeological team identified and excavated privies – pits that served as a receptacle for family trash and waste. Among the objects recovered: writing slates (the kind used by young children to practice the alphabet) and lead pencils, doll parts, toy tea cups, dinner plates, as well as a number of buttons.
“The children of these working class families were literate, or at the very least learning to read and write,” Brighton concludes. “The children had at least some leisure or play time – even in an era when children from the working class were viewed as part of the family’s economic structure and put out to work at an extremely young age.”
Story: Physorg | Photo: Brighton/UMD