As 2015 is coming to a close, most of us are looking forward to what 2016 will bring. But sometimes it is good for our perspective to take a minute and look back at where we (generations of 'we') have come from.
One hundred years ago, can you imagine this?
- The average life expectancy was 47 years.
- Fuel for cars was only sold in drug stores.
- Only 14% of homes had bathtubs.
- Only 8% of homes had a telephone.
- The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
- The average US worker made between $200 and $400 PER YEAR.
- A competent accountant could expect to earn $2000/year.
- A dentist could make $2500/year.
- A veterinarian could make between $1500 and $4000 per year.
- A mechanical engineer could make about $5000/year.
- More than 95% of all births took place at home.
- 90% 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."
- Most women only washed their hair once a month. They used Borax or egg yolks for shampoo.
- Canada passed a law that prohibited poor people from entering their country for any reason.
- The American flag had 45 stars.
- The population of Las Vegas, Nevada was only 30.
- Crossword puzzles, canned beer and iced tea had not been invented yet.
- There was neither a Mother's Day nor a Father's Day.
- Two out of every 10 adults could neither read nor write.
- Only 6% of all Americans had graduated from high school.
- 18% of households had at least one full-time servant or domestic help.
A hundred years seems like a long time, and it is, but it's also only a couple generations back. My grandpa recently passed away at 94. The above was basically the world he was born into, and he passed away with an iPad on his bed stand. And things are changing even more rapidly nowadays. We can't even imagine what the world will look like when our grandchildren are grown.
Look forward to tomorrow, appreciate today, and learn from yesterday.