The Answer to One of Our Most Frequently Asked Questions

Something that we get asked a lot about at Auchindrain is the odd structure between Eddie’s House and Barn, which has a brick base, an iron pot for water, and a chimney. This is the MacCallums’ wash boiler, used to heat water for washing clothes and blankets. It must date to the first half of the 20th century as ‘Young’ Eddie has told us that it was there long before he was. When it was first built water was taken from a trough across the road, which isn’t too far but is a fairly steep walk. There’s a small metal door at the bottom, probably reused from an old fireplace, which can be opened to add fuel to build a fire. This heats the water within the metal basin.



The old boiler, as Eddie calls it, was still in use by his mother during his childhood, with Peggy getting water from the tap in the kitchen and rinsing clothes in the metal basin of the boiler. She would then put them through an old fashioned mangle. The family’s clothesline was in what we now call the Raised Kaleyard which is a short walk away but would get more wind than the garden, helping to dry the clothes and blankets.