5 Little-Known Facts about Closets
Closets are so commonplace that we tend to think that they always existed. While variations of the closet have been around since the Roman empire, the modern-day version didn’t become popular until sometime in the mid-late 1800s. Below are some facts you may not know about closets.
The history of the closet traces back to Roman soldiers. They invented the armorium to transport their weapons and armor safely. In the medieval period, wealthy individuals would make cedar wood chests to protect their expensive clothes from moths and mice.
Walk-In Closet Popularity
Walk-in closets first gained popularity in the 1950s. High rise buildings in New York started building fewer units and more closets so that residents would not need to rely on wardrobes.
The Hanging Rod and Hangars
The hanging rod was first used in 1870. Hangars soon followed, though their origin is disputed. Some believe President Thomas Jefferson invented them, others say O. A. North invented them in 1869. Others believe that Albert J. Parkhouse invented the hangar in 1903. According to Wikipedia, Parkhouse was annoyed when he got to work and there were no hooks to hang his coat. He quickly bent a wire into the shape of a hangar for his coat.
In Britain and Pakistan, it’s common to refer to closets as wardrobes or cupboard. Walk-in closets are referred to as walk-in wardrobes.
A closet tax?
A popular myth is that early American homes were taxed if they had bedroom closets. Many believe that this myth became popular because of the way closets were used in these homes. Bedroom closets were not popular yet. Closets were often located in the living room on either side of the fireplace and were used for general storage. Clothes were kept in a chest, clothespress or a chest of drawers.