A 7-year-Old Asks: “Why Do Colonial Women Nag All The Time?”

The Misfortune Of Knowing

Williams HouseMy 7-year-old twins enjoy historical fiction, anything that gives them a glimpse into how people lived in the past. It was hardly surprising then that one of them would choose Ginger Howard’s William’s House from the school library. The beautifully illustrated book features a fictional family that has moved from England to the New World in 1637. The father of the household, William, builds a home just like the house he grew up in across the Atlantic.

His house is perfect — that is, until the hot New World summers spoil his family’s meat and vegetables, the drier autumns turn the thatch roof into a fire hazard, and the wind threatens to crush his house with fallen trees and branches.

His wife Elizabeth is the first to react to these dangerous conditions, saying repeatedly, “Something must be done!”

William makes the necessary alterations, from building a root cellar to clearing…

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