Milk was a very important resource for a farmer in the nineteenth century. With little meat available, dairy products such as butter and cheese were the best way for people to get protein in their diets. Cows had to be milked twice a day. During the mid-nineteenth century, milking was done entirely by hand. Farmers sat on a stool and milked into a bucket.
Milking Stool, 19th century, wood, H: 12.5 x W: 12.5 x D: 9.5 in. The Farmers’ Museum, Cooperstown, New York, Gift of Gary White, F0094.1993.