30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900
30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900

30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900

Shannon Quinn - March 28, 2019

30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900
Milk delivery man from the early 1900’s. Credit: Pinterest

4. A Gallon of Milk

In the year 1900, professional milk men would go door-to-door delivering glass bottles of fresh milk to people’s homes. Since it was years before every person had a refrigerator in their house, this was completely necessary. People typically only purchased what they needed on a daily basis, instead of buying one gallon to last the week. Today, a gallon of milk is almost $4, but back in 1900, it was just a dollar.

30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900
Butchers from the 1900’s. Credit: Pinterest

3. Seven-and-a-half pounds of steak

Steak is one of the most expensive types of meat people can buy, but back in 1900, it was only $1 for seven and a half pounds. Even better, it was all organic, because this was years before factory farms. Despite its affordable price, the portion sizes of meat in the past were much smaller than the standard American diet of today. So, most families would not be spending an entire dollar at the butcher in one trip.

30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900
Label from a can of Primrose sweet corn. Credit: Pinterest

2. Twelve 2-Pound Cans of Sweet Corn

Today, it’s one dollar for a can of sweet corn that is just a few ounces. But in 1900, you could get a whopping 12 cans of corn that weighed 2 pounds each! This is an example of a really amazing deal that you cannot really come by today, after inflation. However, you would need to eat sweet corn all day, every day to finish that dollar’s worth.

30 Things You Could Buy For $1 in 1900
A potato farmer hard at work. Credit: Wikimedia Commons

1. 70 Pounds of Potatoes

There is a stereotype that potatoes are popular among poor people, and that’s for good reason. Back in 1900, you could buy 70 pounds of potatoes for $1. That’s a lot of potatoes! Since they can be mashed, fried, put into soups and so much more, potatoes are delicious and versatile food. They became a must-have in the standard American diet, and when you think about how much we still love french fries, things haven’t changed very much.


Where Did We Find This Stuff? Here Are Our Sources

The Price of Fashion in 1910. PBS.

Vintage Ad Browser. VintageAdBrowser.com

Things You Could Buy a Dollar in 1900. Ranker.

What Could You Buy In the 1800s With a Dollar? Quora.

Egg-O-See Post Cards. Chris Otto. Papergreat.

How Far Did a Dollar Really Go 100 Years Ago?. Make Change.

How the Brownie Camera Changed Photography Forever. ThoughtCo.

History of Lipton. Lipton.

Boston Tea Party. History Channel.

Also from 1900: Check out these Vintage Car Ads From the Early 1900s to the 1960s!