Laundry Stirs Bucks Co Controversy

A Perkasie woman is standing up for her right to hang her laundry outdoors to dry, on an old-fashioned clothesline.

Carin Froelich says she’s been doing it since she came to Perkasie seven years ago, but she moved the line from the back yard to the front recently, and within a day she started getting nasty notes from neighbors.

“There was a note crushed into the door saying, ‘Looks like trailer trash.’  We keep the house in excellent shape, and I actually won two awards this year from the garden club, so it’s not that I have trash laying around the house, and I was just appalled by the fact that the second note said they don’t like looking at my unmentionables, but never in my entire life have I hung out the unmentionables.  They’re hung inside on a line that’s indoors, personal items like a bra or underpanties or something like that.  I do watch my grandchildren during the day, and I’m potty training, so I do have a lot of wash, a lot of wash. Ha, ha.”

She says borough officials have not pressured her to stop.

“The borough has no ordinances or anything against hanging clothes.  There are no laws that are affecting me, and in many states across the United States they have passed laws that you can hang your laundry out, but people don’t because they’re afraid of what their neighbors might do.  Their neighbors don’t like looking at it.  I get many, many e-mails from people with neighbors who say they can’t hang their laundry.  Well, that just opens another sore because the fact of the matter is that it’s your freedom to hang out your laundry.  You have the right to do it regardless of what your neighbor thinks.”

Froelich says she lived on a farm most of her life, and it’s very upsetting to find that living with neighbors nearby is like living in a fishbowl.  She says they complained about the color she painted the house and a fresh produce stand she wanted to put outside, selling things she grew in her own garden, but she loves her Perkasie home and she plans on staying, clothesline and all.  She says she’s appalled by the fact that neighbors think they can run things, even though the borough has no laws against hanging laundry outside and no objections to what she is doing.  People who agree with what she’s doing can read her book titled Laundry Wisdom: Instructions for a Greener and Cleaner Life.  It should be in book stores in about two weeks.  For more information log onto laundrywisdom.com on the internet.