Wednesday, January 7, 2009

The Year 1908

The following was supplied by commenter Fred Sinclair in response to a post on Scrappleface.

"THE YEAR 1908

This will boggle your mind, I know it did mine! The year is 1908, one hundred years ago. What a difference a century makes! Here are some statistics for the Year 1908:

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The average life expectancy was 47 years.

Only 14 percent of the homes had a bathtub.

Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone.

There were only 8,000 cars and only 144 miles of paved roads.

The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.

The tallest structure in the world was the Eiffel Tower!

The average wage in 1908 was 22 cents per hour.

The average worker made between $200 and $400 per year.

A competent accountant could expect to earn $2000 per year, a dentist $2,500 per year, a veterinarian between $1,500 and $4,000 per year, and a mechanical engineer about $5,000 per year.

More than 95 percent of all births took place at HOME.

Ninety percent of all doctors had NO COLLEGE EDUCATION! Instead, they attended so-called medical schools, many of which were condemned in the press AND the government as ’substandard.‘

Sugar cost four cents a pound.

Eggs were fourteen cents a dozen.

Coffee was fifteen cents a pound.

Most women only washed their hair once a month, and used
Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.

Canada passed a law that prohibited poor people from entering into their country for any reason.

Five leading causes of death were:

1. Pneumonia and influenza 2. Tuberculosis 3. Diarrhea 4. Heart disease 5. Stroke

The American flag had 45 stars.

The population of Las Vegas, Nevada, was only 30!!!! (Ed: I question this)

Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and ice tea hadn’t been invented yet.

There was no Mother’s Day or Father’s Day.

Two out of every 10 adults couldn’t read or write.

Only 6 percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.

Marijuana, heroin, and morphine were all available over the counter at the local corner drugstores. Back then pharmacists said, ‘Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind, regulates the stomach and bowels, and is, in fact, a perfect guardian of health.’ (Shocking? DUH! )

Eighteen percent of households had at least one full-time servant or domestic help.

There were about 230 reported murders in the ENTIRE! U.S.A.!”

Both my parents were children during this year. Even thirty years later, as a tyke myself, things hadn’t really changed all that much. None of our relatives had indoor plumbing or electricity on their farms. All we had to eat was a cornucopia of delightful food prepared to perfection and in plentiful supply. Mom and I finally got a refrigerator in 1945 and a car in 1949.

Even “deprived” as we were, they were the golden years of my life. Some have equaled but none have surpassed those wonderful days..

In His abiding love,

Cecil Moon


Matt Lowry said...

Your post today reminded me of going to visit my Grandma in Wyoming when I was a kid. (I was born in 1954 for reference)
They lived on a farm/ranch, had no electricity...but they did have water indoors...hand pumps from their well.
One of my most vivid memories was playing outdoors one summer...I must have been about 6 or so....and I sat down on the ground, only to soon be host to hundreds of Wyoming red ants.
Now you know where the old saying comes from....I was running around shucking clothes until I was birthday clean. My folks and Grandma and Grandpa were rolling on the floor watching all this take place.

Later my dad and gramps and I went out in the hills to hike and see the sights. We saw several coyotes, antelopes, elk and while hiking around a big rattlesnake sunk his fangs into my grandpa's boot; then started heading for my bare leg. Grandpa promptly dismissed the rattler with his walking stick and several well-placed blows to the head followed by a rather large rock.
It was the wild west! Quite an impression on a youngster! I had the rattle off that critter for a long time...not sure what happened to that.

Thanks for prompting the memory.

Anonymous said...

Cec, there are still people in our area that do not have electricity and indoor plumbing. My husband's parents do have indoor plumbing for the kitchen sink, a toilet and second sink though the outhouse is encouraged for use in warm weather. Due to their Finnish heritage they still do use the outdoor wood stove sauna for all their bathing. They heat their home with wood, as do about half the homeowners in the area.

In fact we will be building an outdoor sauna in a couple of years. We just can't seem to get that really clean feel with a shower.