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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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18th and 19th century homes contained many hazards for young, mobile children. Open fires posed a particular danger, as did the scalding water usually heating over it. Baby tenders like this one kept little ones temporarily out of harm's way while older household members performed their day-to-day tasks. Most households did not use such devices. They often relied instead upon older children to watch over younger siblings. Young children were often left entirely to their own devices, sometimes with tragic results.
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