Washerwoman with Her Child, Brazil, 1840s

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Image Reference

Daniel P. Kidder, Sketches of Residence and Travels in Brazil (Philadelphia and London, 1845, 2 vols.), vol. 1, p. 126. (Copy in Special Collections Department, University of Virginia Library)

"Passing up [the river] banks you see scores of lavandeiras, or washerwomen, standing in the stream and beating their clothes upon the boulders of rock . . . . Many of these washerwomen go from the city early in the morning, carrying their huge bundles of soiled linen on their heads, and at evening return with them . . . groups of infant children are seen playing around [their] mothers while they work . . . most of them have been carried there on the backs of the heavily burdened slaves. Female slaves, of every occupation, may be seen carrying about their children in the manner represented by the [wood]cut" (Kidder, p. 126).