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1934 Catalog
Old 11-20-2013, 05:05 PM   #1
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1934 Catalog

Much of my w*rking career was spent with this company, and my last position was as special project manager for closing the field portion of the catalog division in 1986... 2300 units. It brings back memories.
Did you know you could buy a "modern" home for $1,092, and a 6 room house for $558?

There are a number of websites that offer these pages, if this is too slow in loading. A peek at the styles and cost of living in the US, 80 years ago.

1934 Christmas Catalogue from Montgomery Ward | The Scoop Newspaper

As a one time store manager,the last ad really hit home...
live chickens... by mail... I recall going out to a farm, to make an adjustment on the "damaged" delivery of baby chicks, and another time, making a midnight reposession of a 135 ft deep well pump, and being chased by the (former) owner... who had a shotgun!.
Times were different.
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Old 11-20-2013, 05:12 PM   #2
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For a long time I had a reprinted Sears catalog from that era. Interesting to look through.

My parents bought a lot of stuff from Wards, and I still have a couple of inherited mechanics tool and even a small fan I bought for my bedroom when I was about 14. It still works.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:10 PM   #3
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I have a Sears catalog from 1908 which is pretty awesome. 42 pages just in the firearms section -- send in your money and get a gun back in the mail.

The most expensive "buggy" appears to be a Cabriolet for $104.95 (furnished with shafts regularly, but will furnish pole if wanted at same price). Covered by our three-year guarantee against defect in material or workmanship. Shipping weight, crated under 50 inches, about 790 pounds.
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Old 11-21-2013, 09:56 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post

As a one time store manager,the last ad really hit home...
live chickens... by mail... I recall going out to a farm, to make an adjustment on the "damaged" delivery of baby chicks, and another time, making a midnight reposession of a 135 ft deep well pump, and being chased by the (former) owner... who had a shotgun!.
Times were different.

You can still order live chickens by mail.

Now inspection of damaged ones doesn't sound like a lot of fun. Not sure what would be worse chickens, or the farmer with the shotgun. Yes times were very different.

DW and I raised 100 (mail order) meat chickens. The meat was not like you buy today, flavor, muscle, pure white bones. Like what I ate growing up. No wonder everything tastes like chicken today, not many remember what chicken really tasted like.

MRG
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Old 11-21-2013, 02:15 PM   #5
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.94 cent cotton dress and $1.00 "mesh" girdle (ouch!) to go underneath! Wow!
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:40 PM   #6
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You can still order live chickens by mail.

Now inspection of damaged ones doesn't sound like a lot of fun. Not sure what would be worse chickens, or the farmer with the shotgun. Yes times were very different.

DW and I raised 100 (mail order) meat chickens. The meat was not like you buy today, flavor, muscle, pure white bones. Like what I ate growing up. No wonder everything tastes like chicken today, not many remember what chicken really tasted like.

MRG

How did the chicken taste back then? Couldn't tell from your response and I am just curious.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:59 PM   #7
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I have an encyclopedia set from about that time period (20s) - very interesting to look at horseless carriages and farm implements to name a couple - we have changed a bit...truly an emerging market country at that time.

A home for $558. ! Of course there would be a lot of sweat equity erecting it.
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:13 PM   #8
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How did the chicken taste back then? Couldn't tell from your response and I am just curious.
Concentrated lean meat, maybe a hint of game flavor, lot like rattlesnake.:-).

MRG
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Old 11-22-2013, 07:26 PM   #9
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I have an encyclopedia set from about that time period (20s) - very interesting to look at horseless carriages and farm implements to name a couple - we have changed a bit...truly an emerging market country at that time.
It is interesting to me to learn of the hundreds of American automobiles companies that were created up thru the early 1930s. Not to mention all the European auto companies.
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Old 11-22-2013, 09:06 PM   #10
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Concentrated lean meat, maybe a hint of game flavor, lot like rattlesnake.:-).

MRG
You mean like alligator meat?
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Old 11-22-2013, 09:17 PM   #11
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You mean like alligator meat?
No, alligator tastes aquatic, like turtle, frogs etc.

MRG
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Old 12-14-2013, 10:16 PM   #12
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You can still order live chickens by mail.

Now inspection of damaged ones doesn't sound like a lot of fun. Not sure what would be worse chickens, or the farmer with the shotgun. Yes times were very different.

DW and I raised 100 (mail order) meat chickens. The meat was not like you buy today, flavor, muscle, pure white bones. Like what I ate growing up. No wonder everything tastes like chicken today, not many remember what chicken really tasted like.

MRG
I bought chickens by mail when I was a youth in the early 70's ... and yup, you still can today

Shipping Birds | Stromberg's Chicks & Gamebirds Unlimited | | Chicks and Game Birds from Stromberg's |
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Old 12-15-2013, 01:11 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
Did you know you could buy a "modern" home for $1,092, and a 6 room house for $558?

There are a number of websites that offer these pages, if this is too slow in loading. A peek at the styles and cost of living in the US, 80 years ago.

1934 Christmas Catalogue from Montgomery Ward | The Scoop Newspaper
...
Times were different.
I saw that these prices were for material only. The $558 home would cost $1556 when labor was included, as suggested by the ad.

But, but, but while the $1092 home floorplan shows a bathroom for a 3-bedroom home, the $558 does not have one! Does that mean an outhouse is extra? Yikes!

And times have really changed. Yesterday, we came back from an exchanged 2-bedroom timeshare unit that has 2-1/2 baths. All that for 2 of us, and they do not have smaller units.
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Old 12-15-2013, 01:19 PM   #14
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I saw that these prices were for material only. The $558 home would cost $1556 when labor was included.

But, but, but while the $1092 home floorplan shows a bathroom for a 3-bedroom home, the $558 does not have one! Does that mean an outhouse is extra? Yikes!

And times have really changed. Yesterday, we came back from an exchanged 2-bedroom timeshare unit that has 2-1/2 baths. All that for 2 of us, and they do not have smaller units.
Well acording to my DF, in '34 an outhouse might have been still common, depending where you lived. The catalog would had been a prize to have with the outhouse.
MRG
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Old 12-15-2013, 01:27 PM   #15
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Here's something interesting. While materials for a house were $558, a nice man's shirt was $1.

Nowadays, a nice shirt is perhaps $30, but the amount of $30 x 558 = $16.7K now buys material for a garage perhaps, not a small house. Mass production of consumer items has really driven prices down and raises the standards of living. One can just go to Goodwill and other thrift stores to see good clothes get donated, then sold for dirt cheap.
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Old 12-15-2013, 01:29 PM   #16
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Well acording to my DF, in '34 an outhouse might have been still common, depending where you lived. The catalog would had been a prize to have with the outhouse.
MRG
Even later.
DW was born in 1948, and didn't have indoor plumbing until she was 12 years old. This was less than 20 miles from downtown Cincinnati, Ohio.
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Old 12-15-2013, 03:26 PM   #17
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My father's parents got indoor toilet around 1960 in Maine.
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Old 12-15-2013, 07:07 PM   #18
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We got an indoor toilet, a bath and hot water plumbing from a boiler installed behind the fire in 1969 when I was age 14. Gone were the days of bath time on Sunday nights when the metal bathtub was brought in from the yard, put in front of the fire and filled with buckets of water heated from a free standing gas fired copper boiler in the outhouse. We all took turns in the same tub. (The whippet went in last).

.... and no more walking down the yard to use the netty*

*Geordie slang for outside toilet
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Old 12-15-2013, 07:54 PM   #19
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My father's parents got indoor toilet around 1960 in Maine.
Maine, brrrrrrrrrrrrrr.
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