Houses today are much the same as they were then. Other materials were used, but achieved often the same result as today. For example, kitchens today have painted walls – usually acrylic paint. Back then they often used lime on kitchen walls, it made them powdery-white and could be re-done every so often as desired. If you look closely at the characteristics of methods of the olden-times, you often can see secondary benefits, such as how lime may disinfect the kitchen walls to some degree as well as making them look clean and reflect a lot of light.
There was no modern technology – not even electricity. Yet solutions to every-day problems were in place, such as a candle or a lamp instead of an electric light or a horse and buggy or stage coach instead of a motor car. Basically just about every problem has a solution, for example, no refrigeration, but cellars kept things cool and preservation techniques such as canning, small goods. smoking or drying foods were widely used.