I hope you all had a safe New Years. Photo above is our New Years Day Meal.
Charles and I are starting our first week deep into our journals. January 1 we started documenting everything we can. Our budget book, our water and electric meter readings the temperature so we can look at how the temperature affects our meter usage.
We have been doing this for several years now but we added more information.
We also are adding our groceries and prices and anything we purchase.
We are doing a personal study and settling down in the year of 1932, the time of the Great Depression. However we have to study back from around 1900 up until 1939 to get a sense of being an adult in 1932.
We have two journals to share with you for this years study. We have two families, one in Arizona and one in Maine. This photo above is a real journal for the real year 1932. The great depression has been going on since October 29th 1929, just a few days over 14 months. This journal starts January 1932.
Since we are settling into the year of 1932 this true year of 2019 I will start with the journal of Albert and Gladys. Albert has a steady job in 1932, he works for the railroad. He and Gladys have a new baby, their first child, Anna.
We take a look above at the first page of this expense journal. Albert and Gladys have only been married a little over two years so they add things to their home as they can and each month they save a little money and invest a little.
During this time of 1932 many people are struggling due to job losses and the effects of the Great Depression. But some people did okay during the Great Depression.
People live different, some modern and some seem to resemble more like 1890 to 1910 and as I have learned depending on where they lived in the United States can be a vast difference in what type of home they have or if they have electricity or running water. Some have cars and some still use horse and wagon or buggy.
In 1932 much of the rural areas still did not have electricity or running water. They still used oil lamps, gas, coal, wood. They hauled water or some had wells and many traveled dirt roads. Some of the towns and cities were quite modern for the time and some people lived quite comfortable.
This is a bank in Tuscon Arizona in 1932 and this is the city where Albert and Gladys live. They live in the city and as you read along in their journal you can get a sense that they are close to stores. They do have a automobile because the purchases for Gasoline is documented in their journal. Also the purchase of their first radio.
In 1930 some city families had a family automobile. Some did not have a automobile and some that did have a automobile had to sell their car. Even Lawyers and Doctors were not safe from the financial problems and the last couple of weeks I have been reading a diary written by an attorney and he had to sell his automobile in 1932. People that lost their jobs had a hard time finding a new job because those that did have a job held on to theirs.
I will type out these purchases and list them on this post so you can read clearly.
Jan 3, Vacation 7.50, Groceries 2.51,Gasoline .54
Jan 4, Shoe String, Nail File, etc. .25, Insurance 11.94, Dr. Shultz 5.00 ( This could have been a bill from having their baby because it is each month)
Jan 6, Rent 18.00, Groceries 1.36, Note book (.10) , socket (.20)= .30,Trolley (.15) Wave set (.10) = .25
Jan 7, Sunset Dairy 4.80 (Most likely milk delivered at home.),Bread and Pastry .25, Apples .41
Jan 8 Pictures .59, Gasoline .85 Star Paper .80 Yearly Sub for the Star 6.00
Pay Check 58.85
Jan 9, Grocery 3.64, Lactogen 1.20 (Lactogen is a baby formula)
End of first column total 66.19
Jan 9, Paper .05, Bread (.30) butter (.10) = .40, Deposit for picture 1.50
Jan 11, Dress 5.00, Sachers ? .10, Letter opener set .10, Gasoline .60, Babys cap .50
Jan 13, Stamps .50, Bread .10, Nipple .10, Photo envelope .05, Groceries .94, Albert's Shoes 3.95, tomales (.10) Bread (.15) = .25, Stocking .63, Vaseline (.05) T powder ( .05) Shampoo (.05) = .15, Booties .10
Groceries missing amount page torn
Turning page in journal carried over balance 81.83
Jan 15, Slippers .49, bottle washer .09, Jan 16, Gasoline 1.00, Grocery 4.23, Pastry (.20) Ice Cream (.10) = .30
Jan 18, License Plates. 5.83, Tacks .05, Bread .10,
Jan 19, Radio 25.00, Hair cut .25, Tire repair .50, Aerial Eliminator 1.50
Jan 20, Grocery 1.30,
Jan 21, Milk Sugar .85, Lime water .25, Meat .30, Electricity 2.17, Insurance 2.46
Pay check 53.50
Jan 21, Gasoline 1.00, Tuscon Gas Co 1.00,
Jan 22, Grocery .21, films .35, Oil .30
Jan 23, Groc 3.90
Jan 24, Grocery .18,
Jan 25, Compact .95, Grocery 1.21,
Jan 27, Grocery 5.40
Jan 27 , Gasoline
Jan 28, Grocery .73
Jan 29, Razor 1.00, Grocery .10
Jan 30, Mirror 1.00, Magazine .65, Paper .05, Grocery 3.11, Balance carried over to next page 149.47
Cont Jan 30, Kresses for Radio .15, Battery Recharge .75, gasoline .60, pastry .10
Dr. Sultz 5.00
Cash Earned 112.35
So it looks like went over budget for the month but.....
We know there is a Great Depression going on and when we see it all written out we think that it looks like all they do is shop.
But Albert has a good job and we don't know in January what money they had to start with. They are a young couple and most likely don't have a lot of things and a infant.
We do not know if they had a refrigerator (ice box) because there is no ice delivery in January but there is ice delivery in other months suggesting they had an ice box. Were they going to the grocery store often because they did not have a ice box? Did they live close to town? How far did Albert drive to work? and also we do not know what size gas tank he had on his automobile. We don't know.
This is a time before disposable diapers.
Does Albert get the pastry on the way to work? Does Gladys get pastry when she goes to town?
We saw that Gladys purchased a new dress in January.
It looks like the selection is very good for January.
The stores certainly need people like Albert and Gladys to purchase goods to help keep them in business during this difficult time of the Great Depression.
We are seeing another side of the Great Depression, when we look back in history we do not see a lot about the good times during the great depression. What we do see are the horrible pictures and those were real and very bad and people died of starvation and suicide. There are many sides of this time and people often pulled together in hard times and we saw that when we studied world war 2.
As we travel through this journal we will see that they do save and invest money. January was a expensive month for them. In February we will take another look at this journal.
These pictures are January 1932
Appearance was very important in the early 1900s.
Women"s sanitary garments were quite interesting in the past. I remember wearing the belts that hold the pads during that time of month.
However, I did not know that during my mothers and grandmothers life they actually wore rubber aprons under their clothing during that time of month to protect their clothing. Also dress shields for under arm.
You could order a new bathroom from the catalog..
Or a kitchen sink..
But if you did not have running water or bathroom you could still order the Chamber pots or a folding bathtub.
Back here at our home, we started the once a week shopping, grocery budget. After one month we will settle the amount we will spend each week. We are seeing each week how we can do with a limited amount.
The preview picture on today's post is a beautiful dessert dish doily from my friend Daisy.
I have plenty more to come, just trying to sort out how to get this years blog going because I have so much research to post. Not everyone has a budget as good as Albert and Gladys.