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post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
The year is 1902 , one hundred years ago ... what a difference a century makes! Here are the U.S. statistics for 1902:

1. The average life expectancy in the U.S. was forty-seven (47).

2. Only 14 Percent of the homes in the U.S. had a bathtub.

3. Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone. A three-minute call
from Denver to New York City cost eleven dollars.

4. There were only 8,000 cars in the U.S. and only 144 miles of paved

5. The maximum speed limit in most cities was 10 mph.

6. Alabama, Mississippi, Iowa, and Tennessee were each more heavily populated than California. With a mere 1.4 million residents, California was only the 21st most populous state in the Union.

7. The tallest structure in the world was the Eiffel Tower.

8. The average wage in the U.S. was 22 cents an hour.

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

10. 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.

11. More than 95 percent of all births in the U.S. took place at home.

12. Ninety percent of all U.S. physicians had no college education.
Instead, they attended medical schools, many of which were
condemned in the press and by the government as "substandard."

13. Sugar cost four cents a pound. Eggs were fourteen cents a dozen.
Coffee cost fifteen cents a pound.

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

15. Canada passed a law prohibiting poor people from entering the country for any reason.

16. The five leading causes of death in the U.S. were:
1. Pneumonia and influenza
2. Tuberculosis
3. Diarrhea
4. Heart disease
5. Stroke

17. The American flag had 45 stars. Arizona, Oklahoma, New Mexico,
Hawaii and Alaska hadn't been admitted to the Union yet.

18. The population of Las Vegas, Nevada was 30.

19. Crossword puzzles, canned beer, and iced tea hadn't been invented.

20. There were no Mother's Day or Father's Day.

21. One in ten U.S. adults couldn't read or write. Only six percent of all Americans had graduated from high school.

22. Marijuana, heroin, and morphine were all available over the
counter at corner drugstores. According to one pharmacist,
"Heroin clears the complexion, gives buoyancy to the mind,
regulates the stomach and the bowels, and is, in fact, a perfect
guardian of health."

23. Eighteen percent of households in the U.S. had at least one
full-time servant or domestic.

24. There were only about 230 reported murders in the entire U.S.
post #2 of 12
Thanks for posting that! It was very interesting!!
post #3 of 12
That's fascinating!
post #4 of 12
That was very interesting. Its amazing to see how much things have changed over the past 100 years!
post #5 of 12
Very interesting facts! It's neat how things have come so far!
post #6 of 12
That was really interesting to read!
post #7 of 12
It would be very interesting to see current numbers for comparison.
post #8 of 12
11. More than 95 percent of all births in the U.S. took place at home.

No epidural?!?
post #9 of 12
It was safer! Doctors didn't wash their hands or instruments until the late 1800's. The doctor (Semmelweiss) who insisted that childbed fever could be prevented by using clean instruments and washing hands was ostracized by many of his colleagues. Babies born at home and their mothers were safer in the hands of a midwife-literally! Queen Victoria had chloroform as an anesthetic, though. She was the first, I believe.
post #10 of 12
Women only washed their hair on average once a month!?!

OMG - can you IMAGINE how disgusting that was? But I suppose if it was the norm then it wasn't a problem.
post #11 of 12
I hate to admit this....but when I was growing up, we washed our hair only once a week! When a young woman didn't want to take a young man's call, her parents would give the excuse that she was washing her hair, because it was a big deal to do so each week!
post #12 of 12
My maternal grandfather was born in 1902, the oldest child in a big farm family, in Georgia. From my grandparents' stories, THAT was a rough life: no electricity, running water or indoor plumbing.

Bathing and hair washing entailed hauling water from a well, heating it on the (wood-burning) stove and filling a washtub. The whole family used the same tub and water, one after the other. I wouldn't have wanted to be the last one!
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