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Rural Dorset

A window on 19th century rural life

Dorset County Museum has a rather famous toilet, and here you can see it in all its glory as part of a display of rural life in Victorian times. Henry Moule’s ‘dry earth closet’ was a serious rival of the water closet and, many today would argue, kinder to the environment.

A humble Victorian cottage would not have grand facilities such as an indoor toilet, and in this gallery you will find yourself inside a reconstruction of a typical interior. Imagine living day to day without the modern conveniences we now take for granted; domestic duties were hard work and time consuming.

A window on 19th century rural life Out in the fields agricultural work was also backbreaking and wages low. Farm labourers, including the famous Tolpuddle Martyrs, would have been very familiar with the tools you can see here made by local craftsmen.

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A window on 19th century rural life