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The influx of technology brought us both benefits and harms (if not controlled). Stronger chemical pesticides enable higher chances of killing pests, but these pesticides may bring harmful effects to people. Sometimes, it makes us want to go back to a specific time in the past where life was simple and relaxing. This article gives you a walkthrough to how our 18th Century folks have managed to wipe out pests in their creative and mind-boggling ways. 


Eureka! In the World of Pest Control

After multiple trials, errors, and recalibrations of their plans, they identified control systems in the period that unexpectedly has a scientific explanation today. Back in that time, they lifted carpets, shoved down curtains, both shaken off, brushed completely and aired in open areas. Incidentally, moth larvae and eggs on clothes were fragile and vulnerable to being easily washed away from cleaning.


Female adult moths reproduce directly over potential food and ensure success through laying in areas with around 24°C room temperature. Most of the housekeepers didn’t know what they were achieving since there were no inquiries or scrutinization of housekeeping procedures over the years.


Cedar as Natural Pest Control

Natural pesticides were developed in the era using the materials that were readily available to them. Cabinet makers in America during that period used white cedars to repel different kinds of insects. Their tight-fitting lids we most probably the reason why they repulse moths and not their cedar oil. However, when there came a scarcity of cedar trees, manufacturers had to switch designs that prevent pests from entering their products. Today’s world offers a wide variety of choices for cabinets, all thanks to the experiences of the 18th-century people.


101% Tidy Houses

If you are a housewife during the 18th century, you will have to take care of one additional child -- your house. According to historians and museum researchers, there are pieces of evidence that the people in that era lived in spotless and polished households. Fashion furniture became a trend and placed in house corners and edges. Modern researchers noticed that the people in this era manufactured tables and chairs with lightweight but durable materials conducive for easy transport. When not in use, they were brought back to the corners to ensure that the center was brightly lit and to provide open space for more natural cleaning.


Repulsing Rats and Rodents

Ever since the eighteen hundreds, there have been increasing issues concerning rodents and rats among household and commercial buildings. Houses in the old times were not wholly blocking entry portals of pests, especially in summer. We commonly find laths or wood strips covered with baize at the bottom of their exterior doors. Through making this structure shut in the doors and any other floor openings, the rats, and rodents were prevented from entering their houses because they were too big to fit beneath these doors. Modern solutions include trapping these rats in a sticky bath placed near doors. If you want to learn more, here’s a guide on rat control with poison and tips on how to deal with them.


Moths or Carpet Beetles?

The people in the era didn’t notice that insects attracted to the furs of woolens were not just one species but two. Moths shy away from light while carpet beetles were attracted to it. One distinguishing fact is the necessity for carpet beetles to feed on nectar pollen before laying eggs which the moths don’t do.

Perhaps it didn’t matter to them as long as they would repel both all those annoying pests. While there are uninformed of the threats imposed by carpet beetle, their pest control procedures were sufficient enough to keep these pests away.


Ruling Over Bed Bugs

Yes, these troublesome creatures existed even before the 18th century, yet they are still problem-causers today. Beds in the period may be characterized by firm mattresses stuffed with feathers, wool clippings, curled horsehair, straw, and cotton. Sources of feathers include goose, swan, elder or ordinary chicken. Bed bugs appear not because of uncleanliness but because of the existence of nearby feather beds and chicken houses. As we foresee, unless we challenge the composition of the beds with natural materials, bed bugs shall continue to exist and persist.



Companies Drawing Inspiration from Households

Screening is necessary for big plantations of different companies. With this, they have tried drawing inspiration from the existing systems in households. One example is adapting the basic principles involved in integrating screens in homes. Benjamin Latrobe, a company researcher, tried to improvise frames made with gauze large enough to cover a chair, making late-night meetings insect-free. Later, Latrobe the commercial possibilities of screening when he said that companies could also apply the security practices of house rooms.


Architectural Aid

 Elements of architecture became a trend in the mid-eighteenth-century where the primary purpose is to hinder pests from entering inside. Such an architectural craze also offered unintended benefits such as allowing air to enter while blocking sun rays, and stopping rainwater from infiltrating. However, there were downsides of the invention such as entry of smaller insects like mosquitos, inhibition of dust particles, allowing the cold breeze to enter during winter. These key points were noted and became the framework of the windows we use today.


Non-Toxic, It’s Fantastic

 Rather than relying on chemical combinations, eighteenth-century people instead started an ‘integrated pest management’ solution. The series of steps done in this process includes addressing the origins of the pest problems through strategically knowing the life cycle of particular pests. The pest control practices then focused on pests’ access for foods and started experimenting with procedures that hinder their entry, growth, and survival.


While insecticides are now big things today, traditional measures appeared effective but tedious. There is always a balance between quality and costs; if we want higher quality pest control, we need to sacrifice more values.



 Indeed, these events have told us that things might change for better or for worse. Like how butterflies metamorphose and shell out their ugly looks, pest control has evolved in such a way that it became an art and science. The beauty of our systems today is all based on the tedious works that the eighteenth-century people have invested.