January 8, 2013

1910: Car and Nation

[Note: Item received in email this morning.]

This car was assembled on November 11th of 1910. Normally, 1909/1910 style bodies were wooden, but this 1910 style body is partially steel, the only one known; presumably a transition to the use of all steel bodies in 1911. It was originally delivered to R.E. Lawrence in Astoria, IL. Vernon Jarvis of Decatur, IL, purchased the car in 1951 and later displayed it in his Early American Museum at Silver Springs, FL, until in 1967, when the current owner bought it. After 30 years in storage, restoration was completed in March, 2007.

The year is 1910, over one hundred years ago.

The average life expectancy for men was 47 years.

Fuel for this car was sold in drug stores only.

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 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 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.

The 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!

Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and iced 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 and only 6 percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.

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.!

I am now going to forward this to someone else without typing it myself.

From there, it will be sent to others all over the WORLD... all in a matter of seconds!

Posted by gerardvanderleun at January 8, 2013 11:00 PM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Embedded in that post of yours is an illustration of one of the things that is wrong with America - and, to be fair, the UK also.

According to that; vets, dentists and engineers all earned considerably more than accountants were paid. I very much doubt that is the case now.

Posted by: Fletcher Christian at January 9, 2013 2:37 AM

The overall homicide rate in 1910 was 4.6 per 100K population, in 2011 it was 4.7 per 100K. So 1910 was not really less violent than now.



Posted by: Donald Sensing at January 9, 2013 7:39 AM

Also, hate to bust the sender's bubble, but in 1910 there were 92,200,000 (rounded) people in the US, so with a homicide rate of 4.6 per 100K, there were about 4,250 murders, not 230.

Posted by: Donald Sensing at January 9, 2013 7:49 AM

Plus, in those days they didn't cotton too all the men who were being poisoned by their wives.

What a better country this would be were high schools restricted to a few percent of the population. Better for the high schools and better for the population.

Posted by: james wilson at January 9, 2013 8:17 AM

" ... The average life expectancy for men was 47 years ..."

Most of us reading this would already be dead. (I assume similar stats for women and children although they didn't show in any demographics.)

Life was not any better back then, merely simpler and shorter.

Death came quickly and often.

Posted by: chasmatic at January 9, 2013 10:09 AM

Death came swiftly and often, especially in 1918.

Posted by: Jewel at January 9, 2013 10:14 AM

Remember, that's average life expectancy at birth. Life expectancy for men who reached adulthood was mid-sixties.

I was surprised by the high income earned by engineers.

Posted by: jaed at January 9, 2013 12:38 PM

Do you know the car manufacture's name; can't make out the letters on the radiator.

Posted by: madtntaxpayer at January 9, 2013 2:30 PM

Remember, that's average life expectancy at birth. Life expectancy for men who reached adulthood was mid-sixties.

I was also going to make that point. It is one of the biggest problems with using statistics in history. Those stats are totally misleading without context.

Posted by: Don Rodrigo at January 9, 2013 2:32 PM

Weren't there 46 states in 1910?

Posted by: Snackeater at January 9, 2013 2:39 PM

madtntaxpayer, it looks to me like a Model T Ford.

Posted by: pfsm at January 9, 2013 4:27 PM

Things did change a lot a hundred years later. Good thing, most of them are positive.

Posted by: Sarah Park at January 9, 2013 10:47 PM

Twenty-two cents an hour being two silver dimes and change, being something like $4.75 in Federal Reserve Notes today. Pretty dang productive given the technology of the day.

Posted by: Erik from Seattle at January 10, 2013 12:57 PM


I never watched The West Wing series until it came up on my netflix radar a couple of weeks back. Since last Thursday, I have consumed a dozen or so episodes during a brief, if brutal, onslaught of intemperate Austin weather.

My ears pricked yesterday when the show's sub-theme focused on a book recounting american facts from one hundred years ago. I wondered if it was true or simply screenwriter fantasy.

I'm pretty sure you just listed nearly every item that particular episode covered.

Hope you are physically well, emotionally satisfied and mentally stimulated, Gerard.

Big hugs and warm kisses.

Posted by: Daphne at January 10, 2013 5:29 PM

No wSy there were only 230 murders. Also prices for good were quite high. It took the average worker 45 min to earn enough to buy 12 eggs. Today that would make eggs cost nearly $10 per dozen.

Posted by: Bobloblaw at January 11, 2013 11:55 PM

If I could escape to 1910, I'd go in a red hot minute.

Posted by: Lorne at January 18, 2013 6:08 PM