Aprons and Silver Spoons: The Heartwarming Memoirs of a 1930s Scullery Maid

Aprons and Silver Spoons The Heartwarming Memoirs of a s Scullery Maid When young Mollie became a skivvy in a stately London townhouse aged just she quickly learned that a large amount of elbow grease and a sense of humour would be tantamount to surviving there Throu

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  • Title: Aprons and Silver Spoons: The Heartwarming Memoirs of a 1930s Scullery Maid
  • Author: Mollie Moran
  • ISBN: 9780718159993
  • Page: 289
  • Format: Paperback
  • When young Mollie became a skivvy in a stately London townhouse aged just 14, she quickly learned that a large amount of elbow grease and a sense of humour would be tantamount to surviving there Through Mollie s eyes we are offered a fascinating glimpse into London s invisible downstairs , a world that has long since vanished.

    One thought on “Aprons and Silver Spoons: The Heartwarming Memoirs of a 1930s Scullery Maid”

    1. Born in 1916, Mollie Moran gives us a wonderful insight into her childhood in the Norfolk countryside. When she is fourteen she goes on to get a job as a scullery maid on a large Norfolk estate, (part of that involved travelling up to London for 'the season'.) Later, in her early twenties she got a job as a cook, on another big estate - Wallington Hall . The book winds down when she meets her husband, Timothy, who was a corporal in the RAF. We get a satisfying synopsis of the life that followed [...]

    2. What a wonderful memoir. And not just a memoir about working downstairs as a kitchen maid which the author Mollie Moran did, but also as a social document, recording and detailing political events happening at the same time. What I discovered when reading was that the author was close friends with Flo Wadlow who's memoir I have also read which gave the account even more poignancy. Just adorable and heartwarming.

    3. This was a pure joy to read. Mollie's spirit of exuberance and energy! Not to mention her positive and practical sense and lack of any class envy or self-pity. And this also holds the core base quality of what a memoir should always hold. Absolute detail of practice and minutia of that time, coupled with emotional memory. All told in the language of a Norfolk girl. Loved the recipes! But where do I now get cracked suet? And yet, I will actually try that trifle and the sausage roll.4.5 star round [...]

    4. I just have to say. Wow! What a terrific read. Every since Downton Abbey, I have been interested in reading about people who actually experienced being a "below stairs" staff. I found it very impressive that the author Mollie Moran just wrote this book last year at 97 years old. Mrs. Moran started out as a scullery maid at 14 years old. She worked for a kindly elderly man and his son. A scullery maid is the lowest position and often the longest hours. the first place she worked for lasted five y [...]

    5. This book is also published under the title Aprons and Silver Spoons: The Heartwarming Memoirs of a 1930s Scullery Maid. Neither one really does it justice. I really enjoyed it.Many years ago I read Margaret Powell's scullery-maid-to-cook memoirs; she and Moran are chalk and cheese. Powell resented "them upstairs" having money and nice things; a city girl to the bone, she cared nothing for the countryside, saying "If you've seen one tree you've seen them all, haven't you?" She left a reasonably [...]

    6. After leaving school at the age of 14 in 1930, Mollie Browne takes a job in a London as a scullery maid; she works in domestic service for 10 years, working her way up to cook. In this chatty memoir, the author gives a rare and fascinating insight into a bygone era, the golden years of the early 1930's before the outbreak of World War II.Even though Mollie put in long 15 hour days and worked hard, she also enjoyed some freedom and lived a rich life. She fell in love with boys and went to dances, [...]

    7. I loved this look into life "downstairs," but what I loved even more was the author's positive outlook on life. When she wrote the book she was in her 90s and still hosting dinner parties for 25-30 Scrabble friends. Her attitude is very inspiring. The look into life as a scullery maid was enlightening and made me miss "Downton Abbey" even more.

    8. An absolutely super read. Being a Norfolk girl myself, some of the dialogue in the book and the way that it is written is easily recognisable in that special Norfolk dialect. I loved the stories and how neatly it all flowed. I would of loved Mollie as a friend if I had lived back then. Her sense of adventure and spirit is just amazing. Highly recommended.

    9. I really enjoyed reading about Mollie's time in domestic service. Being a Downton Abbey fan, I liked hearing the stories from a person who actually lived the downstairs life. This was an easy and enjoyable read and Mollie seems like she would be a hoot to be around.

    10. They could have literally scripted Downton Abbey from this book. Not only the events but the characters too. They were all there. I didn't realize at first that this was a true life memoir but her life was fascinating. It made me appreciate the DA series even more because they addressed so much that was true to life, even in the case of Mollie Brown. This book gave additional insights into current events of the day and an in-depth look at the life and responsibilities of the house servants. My h [...]

    11. Manor houses, dinner parties, the London season - it all sounds so glamorous and exciting, for the blue bloods anyway. But what about the "other half"? You know, the butler, the footmen, the lady'd maids, the chauffeur, the cook, the kitchen maids, and finally, at the very bottom of the latter, the scullery maids. What about them? It's a common misconception to assume that domestic servitude began to die out after the end of World War One. Well into the late 1930s, it was not unusually to find t [...]

    12. Delightful memoir of life in domestic service in the 1930s. Mollie Moran started as a scullery maid in 1931, at the age of fourteen. Going from life in a cottage in Norfolk to a big London house was a dramatic change for her. She worked a fifteen hour day with one half day off a week and every other Sunday. Her workload seems incredibly heavy, but despite that she enjoyed her time in service, learning to cook, experiencing London life, and life in a great country house, and making a lifelong fri [...]

    13. DISCLAIMER: I received this book for free from a First Reads giveaway.4.5 stars!What a joy this was to read! I feel like I came to know Mollie, similar to if she was my grandmother (or a friend) and sat me down to tell me the story of her youth. Mollie's tone is comforting and familiar, making for a lovely book. Her personality shines through on every page.All of it captivated me, from getting to know what Mollie was like as a child, to her many adventures (and hard work!) as a teenager to a yo [...]

    14. I adored this book and its author. In fact, I wish she was a friend/relation because I would love to hear more of her stories.The book fell into my hands this week at the library and complements another book I'm reading on the 30s in England, a time of major transition from the old hierarchal order to the new, what would become known as, a more distributed networked order. Moran expertly and entertainingly captures that pivotal point in history.Equally intriguing is her detailing of the devastat [...]

    15. I felt like I was watching a documentary on PBS while I was reading this book. I think anyone who enjoys Downton Abbey will love this real life story of Mollie Brown, a woman who worked in service during the era when Lords and Ladies still ruled the manors and estates of England. She started out as a scullery maid and eventually worked her way up to cook, all while having some crazy adventures along the way. She is a spitfire who wrote this in her 90s and I can't help but wish I could sit down t [...]

    16. An absolutely delightful and heart warming tale of a girl who starts out as a scullery maid in a grand house in the 1930s and the friendship and love she finds there. I enjoyed this book because it has such warmth. Mollie Moran spins a yarn every inch as good as Catherine Cookson in my view, except that her story is a true, and based on her years in service before she got married. I also really enjoyed this book for its historical detail as it gives a brilliant insight into the painstaking work [...]

    17. What a fun read! Brilliant write by a 97yr old about her youth, with lots of exuberance, detail, and recipes! This is the kind of feisty old lady you wish you knew - delightful. Also, she put in pictures, yeah! History from a new perspective, really rounds out one's understanding, and did I mention fun? I also suspect this book may be inadvertently selling copies of Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management, or whatever that cookbook's title was. Guess I should just try the recipes she put in h [...]

    18. I am a big fan of Downton Abbey so I enjoyed this memoir about Molly's life as a kitchen maid. With the historical background of post WWI and pre WWII, Molly shares the life of a very young girl growing up in an uncertain time. She was fearless in her pursuit of living life to the fullest. Her adventures are hilarious and she often had to learn the hard way from her mistakes. I would love to spend time with 90 year old Molly and hear more stories. She obviously has lived an amazing life.

    19. It's hard not to think back on this author with a slightly bemused smile, even though I didn't love this book. I find her style irritating, always cheery in a cheeky "ain't I a stinker" sort of way. But I will say that this book gave me new insight into the life of a skivvy-cum-cook between the wars. Not great writing but light and interesting. Impressed by her life and her feistiness at this age. Enjoyed the details she remembers.

    20. This is a pleasant, interesting memoir by a woman who spent ten years in domestic service during the 1930s. It's very informative, and I think that she did a nice job giving some background on events and society at the time. I learned a lot.The book also flows really well and I flew right through it.Congrats to Mrs. Moran for living a full, interesting life (she was 97 when the book came out!) and for sharing her experiences with the rest of us.

    21. This book was both funny and entertaining. I felt I was right there with the author,living every experience that she lived. The closer I got to the end of the book the, the sadder I became,knowing this read would soon be over. Great read!!!this book is for anyone that longes for the simpler times in life is reminiscent of the show "Up stairs Down stairs

    22. Loved this one! Feisty Norfolk girl Mollie Browne goes into service in the early '30s as a scullery maid. Only 14 at the time, she had much to learn about life, love and hard, hard work. This was an entertaining glimpse below stairs and at pre-WWII London. I'll take someone who actually lived it over historical fiction any day!

    23. This is a really nice book. I did not realise it was non-fiction when I picked it up but when you read it, it feels like fiction because of the way it flows. If it wasn't for the pictures in it I would have thought it was fiction. It tells the true story of Mollie and her progress up through the ranks. It is really interesting!

    24. This has been the most enjoyable and fun read I have had in a while! The author has a wonderful personality and the book reads like a conversation with an old friend. I loved learning more about her time and if you like Downton Abbey, you will love this book!

    25. Very interesting insight into life 'below stairs'. Mollie has some fantastic tales and the people really life as she describes them so well.Really enjoyed this.

    26. Not literary but so so so much more fun to be honest. The author's voice really made me laugh, so mischievous.

    27. I’ve read many books about domestic service. I think Mollie had a very unique experience and was quite fortunate to have such compassionate employers during her time in service. Her experience was not common and the amount of freedom she seemingly had was rather astounding. Her narrative voice was strong. I found myself frustrated with her juvenile self at times. I was not, and never have been, a hormone-driven, boy-crazy girl so maybe I just don’t get it but her obsession with boys over alm [...]

    28. (3.5 stars) For those who are fans of Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey, this book is the memoir of a woman who began her work in service in England in the 1930s at the age of 14. Starting out as a scullery maid, Mollie details all of the labor that each day entailed and had to meet the exacting standards of the upper servants. Through hard work and some initiative, she moves up in the kitchen, assisting the cook and then moving on to a new position in a new house. She details the differenc [...]

    29. Mollie Moran began domestic service at the age of fourteen and much of this book pertains to her ten years living "downstairs." It was fun to read about the various adventures Mollie had on her time off as well as of her love interests. She sounds like a fun woman who always looked to the positive aspects of life despite trying circumstances. I appreciated reading about what England was like during the time she spent there. The book predominantly takes place after WWI leading up to and following [...]

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