Stop #8: In servant’s courtyard

“Servants came in advance of the family to open the house and prepare for the family’s arrival.  Servants at the Pope and Tevis estate worked long hours, generally receiving two afternoons or mornings off per week.  Many servants in the earlier part of the 20th century were European immigrants.  The kitchen, separated from the main house in case of fire, was the lifeblood of the estate.  Sigrid Anderson, listed in the 1930 census as the Pope’s Swedish cook, worked over a large wood-burning stove all day, cooking meals not only for the family and their guests, but for all the servants as well.  The rooms above the kitchen were used as a schoolroom by the Tevises for their four young children, but because the Pope children were older, they used these rooms as additional servant’s quarters.  The Tevis and Pope families had up to 35 servants on the estate.  While some, like the tutor, butler, and nanny, often worked for the families back in San Francisco as well, others were locally hired just to work summers on the Tahoe estate.  Local Washoe women, for example, often did the laundry and worked in the garden.  Other servants included numerous maids, a chauffeur, blacksmith, valet, boatman, stableman, caretaker, and many others.  A dairy and vegetable garden on the estate supplemented food shipped here from the Bay area.  Feel free to walk around and look into the various servant’s quarters, as well as the storage and work rooms on the other side of the kitchen.”

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