Thimble House

930 Laramie | Manhattan, Kansas

 

930 Laramie isn’t named for any of its former occupants but rather for the gatherings that were so commonly held in the home — and reported about in the newspapers — during its early years. In the early 20th century, women felt compelled to be constantly productive, and felt guilty if their hands were not always busy with meaningful work. While their husbands might come home, put their feet up, and read the paper or snooze, a woman was expected to continue working through the day, sewing, cooking, cleaning, and minding the children. A thimble party, or “entertaining at thimbles,” was a chance to get together with other ladies, serve “nice” or “dainty” refreshments (as news articles were careful to point out), and enjoy the afternoon and each others’ company — of course, with mending bag and thimble in tow so that they could “work” while they socialized.

Restored in 2016, this home is now divided as a duplex, and is surrounded by lush garden landscaping that accentuates its corner location.

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