Living through economic depression..1929 – 1941
· First world war – July 1914 – November 1918
· Roaring twenties(1920s ) - post war, birth of modern womanhood, art deco, unprecedented industrial growth, accelerated consumer demands and aspirations, (birth of commercials,) significant lifestyle and cultural growth, media focus on movie stars, sports heroes, jazz music…the progressive years!
· Then the Wall Street Crash of 1929… ended this era and the great depression set in…
· Great depression 1929 – 1941
· Second world war 1939 - 1945
I find it fascinating to understand this history and see its lasting impact, till today.
I find it more fascinating and amazing to learn how people lived through the great depression 1929 -1941 and world war two in 1939- 1945! Sixteen years of great emotional, financial and physical difficulties.
People had to think, see and do life differently. In doing some research I found these truisms of yester year, hold true for daily life, even today.
Here are 5 –
1. Quit credit…if you don’t have to money to buy it, don’t. In today’s wisdom, you can say, use credit to your advantage; be it a mortgage, credit when needed and paid off quickly, a car of need, not want. Keep it with in your budget and not over extend into depressing debt.
2. Nurture positive relationships with family and friends. They will see you through difficult times. But you need to work together and stop being in denial and expecting a free ride.
3. Facing financial difficulties
- Be honest with your family and friends that you are facing difficult times financially. And don't be ashamed—good people have money troubles.
- Discover ways to barter (or share) and help each other.
- Talk to your children about your financial crisis - You don't want to worry your young children, but talking with them in a forthright, reassuring way will be more helpful than keeping up a lie. Kids usually want your time and attention more than stuff, anyway.
- Get adult kids to pay their share - A healthy adult child should not expect parents to pay their way. And a healthy adult certainly shouldn't expect their young children to pay their way.
4. Enjoy the simple pleasures.
During the Depression, people still had fun, just not lavishly expensive fun. Children had soapbox derbies, teenagers had dance contests, and everyone played Monopoly, did puzzles, read, and listened to the radio.
People got together to discuss philosophy or pray; played card games, made crazy quilts from worn out clothes; played instruments and danced, at home and at the dance halls. In those days, it took some imagination and ingenuity, but they had a lot of fun without hanging out at the mall, and you can.
In the United States, the national and state park systems granted and protected access to natural recreation. This was an inexpensive outing or fun holidays. Here in Australia, we have this available as well. A day out into the bush or a camping trip gives a great freedom of choice.
5. Do it yourself. When money is short, choices are limited, but you still have a choice! Learning to it yourself goes a long way towards a good life. Learn how to fix and maintain everything in your home, including your clothes and accessories. These skills are handy even if money is not tight; it enables you to be resourceful with a sense of contentedness; or save money for something you ‘want’.
· Learn to sew, mend torn seams, hem, sew buttons, and sew zippers. This will make your clothes last much longer.
· When you need new clothes, either shop at second-hand stores and tailor the clothes so they fit, or buy fabric and make your own clothes from patterns instead of buying an expensive outfit just for the designer label.
· You can also apply your sewing skills to recycle old clothes into handy new things.
- Get in touch with your inner handyman or handywoman. Do you know how to fix a running toilet? Pack a water shutoff valve? Change a clothes drier belt? Replace an interior doorknob?
- Change the oil in your car. While you're at it, you might want to check and change the oil, battery and cabin air filter yourself.
In this day of so much screen time, use it to your advantage. You can learn all these things via the internet! Grant learnt to replace our TV aerial, fix our rotting veranda rail and install a second hand wood burner heater all through the internet.
Hope this encourages you as much as it does us.
Grant and Mignonne