it. was. great.
back in 2000, this young couple with a 1-yr old son got sick and tired of living in a high-rise condo in NYC. so, they quit their jobs, sold everything, and moved back to the year 1900. they bought a farm in Virginia and lived off the land for one whole year.
they did tremendous research about things they could & could not live with in 1900. like, they were allowed to have an old coffee grinder for coffee, but certainly not electricity, indoor plumbing, or transportation aside from bikes and horse-drawn buggies. they attended farmer conventions and learned absolutely everything about planting, canning, & cooking their own food.
the funny thing is they were surrounded by other farms with modern-day amenities and folks that thought they were a little crazy. for example, they would be invited to summer evening parties but would arrive in their horse & buggy, or on their bikes. some people offered them car rides home, but they refused because they were committed to 1900 for a year. their new friends learned to respect their big project, and any gift they were given was one they made sure they could receive in the year 1900. like, if neighbor lady wanted to give them a case of beer, she made sure it said something like 'since 1890' on the label.
it was a fantastic read. i couldn't put it down and really felt like i was cheating because i was reading it by an electric light at night.
buy it (i bought mine used for $2.00). read it. be inspired.
but not so inspired that you build an outhouse.