Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent

1:45 p.m.

A man on vacation is reading, sitting on a wicker bench at the rear of a summer residence.

Reading on a bench, 1914-1937.

Musée du Bas-Saint-Laurent, Paul-Parrot Collection, pa0309.

The holidays were a break from day-to-day worries. Although businessmen followed market reports in the newspaper (usually arriving a day or two late), the vacationers took the time to read for pleasure and to write. They kept diaries and wrote letters to their friends, or perhaps postcards, which were sold from the early 1900s on. Many hotels even offered their guests a selection of books to read.

Notice the bench in this photograph. Its rustic look is characteristic of the early 20th century’s Arts and Crafts Movement, when architects, furniture-makers and interior decorators took inspiration from nature, local materials and artisanal skills.

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