Althuus family

An ordinary family 150 years ago

Meet the farming family and those who worked for them: visit them in their living quarters and farm buildings and let them tell you their stories. Plunge into the world as it was 150 years ago and drink in the atmosphere exuded by this historic farmhouse. There is plenty to discover. For one thing, it could be a real challenge to get on with other people!

«God‘s greetings to you and a warm welcome to this time-honoured house!»

«I am Jakob‘s unmarried sister – they call me ‘Tante Kläri‘. Marriage wasn‘t on the cards for me. Ueli from the farm next door really fancied me, but my father wanted all our property to stay together. I still hold that against him. People used to say that I was simple. It‘s not my fault that my mum nearly died when I was born and that‘s why I was all blue when I entered this world.

Yeah – dear old mum! They were all pleased that I nursed her until the Dear Lord took her to Him. Almost to the very end she tried to make herself useful: she prepared the vegetables in the kitchen, peeled the spuds and listened to the sorrows of the servant girls when they were feeling low. She brought up seven of us children. She had to work hard all her life and never complained. I‘m different: I don‘t always hold my tongue. Things aren‘t what they used to be, now that Elsi, my sister- in-law, has arrived at the farm! She tries to boss us all around. However, I‘m the one who deals with the hemp and flax. I watch over the servant girls while they roast and crush the fibres. We spin everything ourselves and weave cloth for our garments and bedlinen. I wonder what would become of us if Elsi had to do all that. She never has time for anything!

I also know lots more than the master‘s wife does about the Harvest Festival. Everyone is allowed to take part: the farm hands, the servant girls, the day labourers and their families, but also the poor of the village. We have to take care not to skimp on anything, otherwise people would be quick to blacken our name. We couldn‘t have that happen. Since mum left us I often also have to watch over the children.

I‘m gradually getting fed up… but come and look for yourself!»