Colonial Living is Edwin Tunis's a vigorous re-creation of 17th- and 18th-century America―of the everyday living of those sturdy men and women who carved a way of life out of the wilderness. In lively text and accurate drawings we see the dugouts and wigwams of New England's first settlers and the houses they learned to build against the cruel winters; the snug Dutch and Flemish farmhouses of Nieuw Amsterdam; the homes of the early planters in the South which would one day be kitchens for the houses they dreamed of building when tobacco had made them rich.
Long research and love for his subject gave Tunis an intimate knowledge of the details of daily living in colonial times, from the period of tiny coastal settlements to the flourishing, interdependent colonies which fought a major war for independence. He shares all with his reader―the building of houses, with their trunnels, girts, and hand-hewn beams, the spinning of yarn and its weaving and dyeing, the making of candles and soap, and the intricate business of cooking on the open hearth with lug poles, cranes, bake kettles, and spits. He describes the early crops, and pictures the implements and animals used to produce them; in detailed pictures we see again the tools and products of the craftsmen―the blacksmith, the cooper, the miller, the joiner, and the silversmith.
Edwin Tunis has brought the significant past to life with consummate skill. Rich in enjoyment, rich in information, with more than 200 drawings, his book is a warm, lively, and authentic panorama of a lost way of life.