A Wooden Yoke
This wooden yoke was used for carrying pails of milk, attached to the chains. It came from Thompson’s Farm in Long Crendon.
Cows would have been milked in the fields or barns by hand and then the pails carried by yoke to the dairy, usually by milkmaids or even children. The museum yoke is probably Victorian but versions of yokes have been used for centuries to enable the carrying of heavy loads.
Yokes were also used by milk sellers delivering milk to houses and shops in the streets. They would have been a familiar sight in towns in the 18th and 19thcenturies.
Two full pails of milk could have weighed well over 20kg, a very heavy load. For comparison today a 2 litre container of milk weighs around 2kg.
The yoke is displayed with other agricultural tools in the side corridor.
If anyone has a picture of a yoke in use, could we have a copy to display beside it?