Scullery maid and her duties, role and salary

In large households, the people who were hired to assist the cook were scullery maids. Usually, these scullery maids were very young girls but they occupied the lowest rank of the female servants.

Even though, they used to work very hard- they were the first one to wake up in the morning and the last one to go to bed but they were looked down upon even by other servants. Scullery maids were not even allowed to eat at the communal servants’ dining hall table as they have to be there in the kitchen to take care of the food that was still cooking.

The scullery maid duties
The scullery maid duties

What were duties of scullery maid?

It is the business of the scullery maids to light the fires in the kitchen as well as under the copper or boilers. Not only this, their duties also include the washing up of all the plates and dishes, to rub and clean all sauce-pans, kettles, pots, stew-pans and all other utensils of a kitchen.

They needed to take care that kitchen utensils are always kept clean and dry so that they are fit for use at any time. She used to assist the kitchen maid in various tasks such as trimming, washing, picking and washing the vegetables and boiling them.

The scullery maid painting from 17th c
The scullery maid painting from 17th c

They also performed a major role in cleaning the kitchen, offices, housekeeper’s room, servant’s room and also the steward’s room. Furthermore, she needed to clean the steps of the front door and the rest of the area. She used to make beds for the stable man.

In simple words, scullery maids generally fetch, carry and clean away for the kitchen maid and cook. She used to do laborious part and assists in the kitchen business.

Responsibilities of Scullery maid

Scullery maids wash dishes, towels and prepare vegetables. She helps in keeping the kitchen clean. Moreover, she used to clean the ice-boxes and kindle fire early in the morning when there was no watchman.

In the large establishments, her first duty should be to set her dough for the breakfast rolls, if it is not done on the previous night. After this, she needs to engage herself in the numerous little preliminary occupations which include the duties of the day.

But is that all? No, that is not all. Sometimes, scullery maids were required to perform heavy tasks. Heavy tasks performed by scullery maids includes pumping water and helping with the laundry. Certainly, it was not an enviable position but sometimes there are the chances that they can be promoted to kitchen maid or very rarely up to a cook.

Salary of Scullery maid

Of course, the position of the scullery maids was not of high rank and thus we can conclude that the payment for her services was also not large.

But if she is fortunate enough to have a good kitchen maid and clever cook from whom she can learn to perform several little duties associated with kitchen operations that may find her a more responsible place due to the considerable services.

Now, a majority of the readers will find it doubtless thought to think and connect scullery maids with the great positions.

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