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December 14, 2008

Cabinet of Curiosities: A Christmas Toast!

My great-grandmother Sarah Jane Simpson, who was born in England in 1862, owned this toast rack. Sarah lived in Ramsgate England, where she kept a boarding house. I suspect she used this toast rack on the table for her family and boarders.

In Victorian times, toast was made and then placed in a rack to be set out on the table. The toast rack, along with many other small items owned by Sarah, were given to me by my grandmother (her daughter). It is always difficult to know how or when to use such items but I have a yearly use for this toast rack.

Here is Sarah's toast rack with napkins which I set on our table for the Christmas Dinner. I also own a set of Sarah's silverware, but it is a set made specifically for fish dinners, so I really can't use it. I've tried to come up with ways to use the other treasures left to me by my Grandmother - items which belonged to her, to her mother Sarah and to her grandmother (also named Sarah) but to no avail. So the toast rack conversion to a napkin holder pleases me greatly.


CarolineLD said...

How lovely to see a family piece like this still in use! (And believe it or not, there are plenty of boarding houses in Britain which still use them to serve the toast).

Olive Tree Genealogy said...

I never knew these toast racks were still in use - thanks for your comment Caroline!

Anonymous said...

I use a toast rack still. 'd luv to find one like yours. Most I see are silver or stainless steel without personality. Great you have found a use for it. It is lovely