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The Colonial Goodwife

Talk presented by Velya Jancz Urban Sunday, July 19, 2016

Thank you for the nice day. It was hot, but hot is better than rain. We have planned a little reception for our visitors after the presentation, in appreciation of their support.

Our program was quite different, Velya was going to show and tell the unmentionable subjects that were never ever talked about by the Goodwives, or Goodies. This is what housewives were called in the Colony of Connecticut 300 years ago.


Well, you know everybody does not want to know about the dirty tricks Mother Nature plays on women. We like to think we are no prudes and that we are very open minded, but the truth is, we haven't shed our rooted puritanical culture.

I met Velya at her very first presentation. She was also a bit anxious if anyone would come to hear her story. We both enjoyed that talk.

Back at our house, we were the first ones there. No one was in the seats. Now I was hoping we were not the only curious ones. In a blink of an eye, the room was filled to capacity.

I was most anxious to hear her because when I was a colonial Goodwife at the 300 year old David Humphreys House in Derby, we docents always talked about what these early colonial women did about their personal trials and tribulations in this wilderness so far from their home.

Velya's presentation answered many questions for me. I loved her information and I loved her personally right away. She was funny, very informative, and I felt I have to share her with everybody. Now, she is all over the map because people have heard about her and her unusual presentation.

After the presentation our guests were invited outside to the patio, which was set up beautifully with homemade tea sandwiches and cold drinks.

Ehris came with her herbal teas, but the day was not right for her, so I invited her back to talk about her teas. Tables and chairs were scattered on the lawn and everybody stayed and talked and mingled with friends old and new. The refreshments were good. How do I know? Because the only left overs were the plates they came on!

I overheard a nice comment from one of the guests, "This is a beautiful garden party!"

I thanked all the volunteers and our board members for everything and anything they did to make it a perfect day.

That night I thought about all the stuff I learned and thought did it shock out? Embarrass you? Some of it make you laugh? I thought, "What a horrible hard life." Then I said to myself, "What will they say about us 300 years from now?" I shrugged my shoulders, poured myself a nice cold glass of zinfandel, sat in my easy chair, turned on 60 Minutes, and said out loud, "You've come a long way baby!"

#seymourhistoricalsociety #seymour #connecticut

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