Dining by lamplight

The Rouse Hill dining room by candlelight

The Rouse Hill dining room by candlelight. Photo Scott Hill © Sydney Living Museums

Currently at various Sydney Living Museums Houses we’re running a series of night time tours, where you can see the houses as their original occupants saw them lit by candle and lamplight. Which raises the vexing question of just HOW should you light the historic dining table? Continue reading

Dolly’s cookbook

Portrait of Hugo Youngein with his children, Herbert on the left and Jenny on the right.

Herbert, Hugo & Jenny Ljunggren (Youngein), c1910. Susannah Place Museum Collection © Sydney Living Museums

Dolly’s ‘Cooking homework book’ is 101 years old. Jenny (known as Dolly) Youngein (pictured, right) lived in Susannah Place at 64 Gloucester Street, where her parents ran the corner shop from 1904. Dolly was 12 years old when she created the book. It is still in her family’s possession and is a treasured memento of her childhood. Continue reading

Upstairs, downstairs: 130 years in the basement

The houses in Susannah Place were designed with basement kitchens, with access to the rest of the house via a frighteningly steep and narrow external staircase. Each kitchen had an open fireplace which before long was fitted with a fuel cooking stove that would warm the living spaces above in winter, but add to the heat and discomfort in summer. Unsurprisingly, as technology allowed, the basement kitchens were abandoned in favour of internal kitchens on the same level as living areas. No. 58 was the exception, and its basement kitchen was in use from 1844 to 1974. Continue reading

Susannah Place: a cooking chronology

Susannah Place shop window, showing old fashioned goods for sale, re-created to c1915.

A peek into the corner shop at Susannah Place. Photo © Christopher Shain

Susannah Place conjures the essence of autumn, with its paint peeling, its colours fading, but leaving us with a glimmer of when the houses were busy with the daily lives of its tenants.  This diminutive row of four inner-city terrace houses in Sydney’s Rocks has seen generations of change, not least revealed in its kitchens and dining spaces.

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