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Spring Cleaning History

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

Ever wonder where the phrase 'Spring Cleaning' comes from? Read to find out! Spring Cleaning History |

Every year around the months of March and April we hear people talking about it, we read about it in magazines, and see thousands of pins on Pinterest about it.

What could I be referring to?

Spring Cleaning!

We all use the phrase freely but where does the expression ‘Spring Cleaning’ actually come from?

History tells us that back in the ‘olden days,’ spring cleaning was a much different concept than it is today. Prevalent in climates with cold winters, this cleaning was a necessary routine because of how people had to heat their homes and keep them lit. They would use kerosene, wood, gas, oil, and candles which caused the home to develop a dark, sooty grime around it.

The arrival of spring signaled warmer temperatures and the need to clean the ash, soot, and grime left behind on household surfaces. Thus, the notion of ‘Spring Cleaning’ was born. Thankfully, most of us have modern heating systems and have an easier spring cleaning routine.

Today, we do not do ‘Spring Cleaning’ for the same reasons our ancestors did. In the 21st century, most people think of ‘Spring Cleaning’ as a time to throw open the windows, exchange their sweaters for lighter-weight clothing and clear through clutter that has collected as we burrowed in our homes during the months of winter. It’s a time to re-energize our bodies and our homes for the coming seasons.

Look at your calendar…when will you make an appointment to start your Spring Cleaning?

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About Stacey Agin Murray

Stacey is a professional organizer & speaker in New Jersey specializing in residential organizing, time, and paper management challenges. She also authored The Organized Bride’s Thank You Note Handbook: Let Systems and 101 Modern Sample Thank You Notes Take You From Overwhelmed to Organized.

Categories: Pinterest, Spring Cleaning


4 responses to “Spring Cleaning History”

  1. Jill Robson says:

    I loved the history lesson. I remember growing up in a home with one central source of heat, the coal burning fire place. We would always have soot residue, and in the spring cleaning the windows was major job.

  2. Thanks, Jill. I’m always fascinated by the history/background of things. There’s also historical evidence of various cultures and religions doing their own sort of ‘spring cleaning’ centuries ago I wonder what ‘spring cleaning’ will mean a hundred years from now!

  3. I’d never thought about this stuff – thanks for researching and sharing!

  4. Glad I could give you some ‘food for thought,’ Janet. Despite the small piles of snow still lingering, we started doing some Spring Cleaning this weekend and boy, did it feel good!

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