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Life in the 1800's

What was life like 200 years ago?

People had to work hard from sunrise to sunset just in order to survive.

FOOD: Most Americans ate what they hunted locally or grew. Corn and beans were common, a gallon of milk was 32 cents.

LIFE EXPECTANCY: Beacuse of the high death rate in children, if you were lucky enough to make it to twenty, the average life expectancy was 38.8 years old.

POPULATION: By 1815, the United States had grown into a country of 8,419,000 people.

HOUSING: More then four of every five Americans still live on farms. Many farmers made goods they could sell or barter.

EMPLOYMENT: Farm laborers after the end of the War of 1812 earned $12 to $15 dollars a month. A male school teacher earned $10 to $12 a month; a female teacher earned $4 to $10. A tailor or printer could both expect to earn $6 a week, while a servant might earn only 50 cents a week.

TRANSPORTATION: In 1815, there were no steam railroads in America, so long-distance travel was by horseback or uncomfortable stagecoach over rutted roads.

ENTERTAINMENT: For recreation, horse racing became increasingly popular by the time of the War of 1812. Singing and sheet music became widely popular.

CHILDREN: Children would go to work in mills and factories as young as 6 or 8. Chores at home kept them busy, when they did have time to play it would be marbles and jacks or pick up stick and cards.