The Milliner


32 pages
Contains Photos, Index
ISBN 0-7787-0791-1
DDC j646.5'04'0974




Illustrations by Barbara Bedell

Christine Linge MacDonald, a past director of the Toronto & District
Parent Co-operative Preschool Corporation and a freelance writer, is an
elementary-school teacher in Whitby.


These new volumes in the Colonial People series present a vivid picture
of early American history. The books are generously illustrated with
photographs, period art, and colorful illustrations. Most have
explanatory labels, captions, or other annotations. Two or three
paragraphs of concise prose per page as well as attractive sidebars
highlighting other information make the text accessible to even a
reluctant reader.

The Woodworkers explains the roles of all the craftsmen, including
carpenters, coopers, and all the “wrights” (ship-, wain-, and
wheel-), and how each artisan used his specialized tools. The Blacksmith
discusses the importance of this tradesman to the community. He not only
made items to be used in households and on farms, he also made all the
tools that the other tradesmen used. The Colonial Cook describes food
preparation (baking, churning butter), preserving (smoking, drying,
salting), and the kitchen implements that were used during pioneer
times, and includes many old-time recipes. The Milliner, which describes
“one of the few businesses that a woman could buy and run without a
husband,” depicts the intriguing array of materials and tools that
went into producing and caring for the many items in a well-dressed
lady’s (or gentleman’s) attire. Both the cook and the milliner are
fine examples of the range of responsibilities available to a woman in
colonial times.

In most cases, related trades and the apprentice’s life are also
examined in these volumes. A brief glossary helps with unfamiliar words.

Canadian students and teachers are reminded that this series uses
mainly American photographs and period illustrations. It may require a
leap of faith or a sound historical background to extrapolate Canadian
history from these sources. Recommended.


Kalman, Bobbie, and Niki Walker., “The Milliner,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 15, 2024,