Today, air conditioners, which we often use to create a cool and comfortable environment on hot summer days, have become an integral part of our lives. However, when modern air conditioning systems were not commonplace, people had to cool down creatively and interestingly. In this article, as we travel back in time, we’ll take a look at the original ideas and inventions that ancient people used to cope with the heat. If you’re ready, let’s take a little bit of history and see how people get cold.
1. Fan chairs
In the 1780s, Philadelphia musical instrument maker John Crum invented an interesting cooling device. Working on the constitution during the hot summer months, George Washington paid 32s 6d for this product and sent it to Mount Vernon Manor, where a copy of the product is still on display. Here’s how this interesting machine worked: people used their legs to power a fan that turned over their heads like an old sewing machine. Benjamin Franklin is said to have one too, but the device seems to appeal to a limited audience.
2. Sleeping verandas
Another US president who wanted to keep his cool was William Howard Taft. In 1910, he built a “sleeping porch” on the roof of the White House. Popular in the early 20th century, these mosquito-netted verandas provided access to fresh air, which was believed to have many health benefits as well as providing cool sleep during hot weather.
3. Tarpaulin awnings
If you look at photographs of famous buildings before the invention of air conditioning, you will notice that almost every window has awnings. With a history dating back to antiquity, awnings provided the shade needed to keep out the heat of the sun. In the second half of the 19th century, new colors and patterns made canvas awnings not only a necessary tool, but also an important home decoration.
4. Dog Trot Houses
Popular in the 19th century, the Dogtrot earthen huts kept the interior cool in the scorching heat. The passage in the middle of the house dissipated the wind and at the same time separated areas such as the seating area and the kitchen. This passage cooled especially the hottest parts of the house, such as the kitchen and bedroom.
When the British first came to India, they had to adapt to many foreign things, such as blood-sucking mosquitoes, spicy food and hot weather. But the only thing they couldn’t get used to was the heat. These manually operated ceiling fans were indispensable for wealthy Britons in colonial India. The elite kept slaves to build and manage the punks. And they could sleep peacefully under the sweet breeze created by this primitive instrument.
6. Fresh buttermilk
Ayran is not just a drink of our country. People living in India drink fresh buttermilk to cool off in the scorching heat of the country. Even today, chaas (or doug), a type of spicy buttermilk, is consumed in many immigrant communities in Southeast Asia and around the world.
7. Pressure boosters/iceboxes
Life in the 1880s and 90s must have been really hard. Currently, we can set the desired temperature in our rooms with a single button. However, in those years it was necessary to make a little more effort. Engineers have tried to build some units that bring air from outside into indoor spaces. This air came from underground basements, then passed through ice-filled rooms and was thrown out through suction cups onto the floor of New York’s stylish theaters on Broadway and 13th Street.
8. Sliding window
Throughout history, many impressive ways have been found to cool off. Sliding windows, unlike others, can be opened both from above and from below; this allows cooler air to enter from below and expel hot air from above.
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