Chinese laundry



Almost every town had its Chinese laundry. This makes it difficult to understand why more collectables don't exist. There are plenty of silk irons around and I am sure they used commonly available sad irons that were not uniquely Chinese. I am always hoping to find a Chinese steam iron. Most of these items are shown on other pages but I have gathered them all here on this page---

Advertising and rate blotters were given out at many laundries.

The New Chinese Hand Laundry, Johnstown, Pa:



The George Sam Hand Laundry, Brooklyn NY:



Here is a laundry receipt from 1889-- "Feng Chung Washee":




A laundry card from Wong Sing First Class Laundry, Montreal, front and back:




This is a silk iron. Coals were put in the dish part and that heated the bottom to smooth out dampened silk items. This one lacks a handle but was used in a BC laundry, whereas the origin of most of those commonly available (with handles) on Ebay is unknown.


The top of this large brass iron tilts back to permit putting hot coals inside. Notice the air vents on the sides. This iron came from a ranch in Texas.

A metal label on the back says TEK KEE, with a panel of Chinese characters. It is corroded and I have not been able to get a clear photo of it.


This steel iron was obtained in Seattle. It is the same style as the above brass iron and opens to put coals or a hot brick inside.


This is the label on the back of the above steel iron.



This is a watering can used to dampen cloth before ironing. It was held at an angle to allow a small stream of water to escape the tiny nozzel. The user blew into the open horn and that created a spray of water to dampen the cloth. I was given this spray can by a friend who told me it came from a Chinese laundry in the South Okanagan in BC.


This is a very large laundry basket. It is 29" high by 2 feet across the top. It had a Chinese tag on a string when I found it in an old junk store in central BC.



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