Remember when: 1933
My friend Frazer celebrated his seventy-ninth birthday on Feb. 19. What to give him for his birthday? I finally decided on a “Kardlet” for the year he was born, 1933.
“Remember When … A Nostalgic Look Back in Time” is described by the publisher as “a unique way to acknowledge a birthday or special anniversary … (It) can take you and your loved ones back in time, offering an enjoyable reference for what life was like ‘back then’… This fun tool can stimulate conversation within the family, providing pictures and information so that everyone can experience life during a particular year.”
The 24 pages are packed with interesting news, sports facts and Hollywood highlights, along with price index and other statistical information. The reader can reexperience actual full-colour advertisements; national and world news events; movies, music and sports; famous births; and memorable trivia and facts.
It is a most thoughtful snapshot in time.
As part of the timeline for 1933, the reader learns that “Newsweek” magazine was first published in February. The naval airship USS Akron went down, plunging into the ocean and killing 73 of 76 passengers, in April. John Mackay reportedly sighted Loch Ness Monster in May. The first drive-in movie theatre opened in Camden, New Jersey, in June. The National Football League divided into two fiveteam divisions in July. The temperature reached 126 degrees Fahrenheit (58 degrees Celsius) at San Luis Potosi, Mexico, for a world record, in August. Alcatraz Island was made a federal maximum security prison in October. Prohibition was repealed by the 21st Amendment in December.
World news for 1933 includes the following. Adolf Hitler proclaimed the Third Reich and took power in Germany as chancellor. France granted Leon Trotsky political asylum. Mahatma Gandhi began a hunger strike to protest British oppression in India. Japan and Germany announced their withdrawal from the League of Nations. A Japanese scientist demonstrated the machine gun; it fired 1,000 shots per minute. The board game Monopoly was invented. Albert Einstein arrived in the United States and settled in Princeton, New Jersey. Wiley Post became the first person to fly around the world solo.
The Canadian prime minister was Richard B. Bennett. Life expectancy was 59.7 years. The Singing Telegram was introduced by the Postal Telegram Company in New York.
Sports news for 1933 includes the following. The World Series champion? The New York Giants. The Stanley Cup winner? The New York Rangers. The Canadian Grey Cup champion? The Toronto Argonauts. Babe Ruth hit the first home run in all-star game history to help the American League to a 42 victory over the National League at Chicago’s Comiskey Park.
Yoko Ono was born Feb. 18; Michael Caine, March 14; Willie Nelson, April 30, Joan Collins, May 23; Joan Rivers, June 8; and Larry King, Nov. 19.
Camay was considered to be the “soap of beautiful women,” while Palmolive was regarded as the “soap of youth.”
Favourite movies of 1933 include Cavalcade, The Private Life of Henry VIII, Morning Glory, State Fair, A Farewell to Arms, and Lady for a Day.
Musical favourites include Fortysecond Street (Don Bestor), Stormy Weather (Ethel Waters), A Ghost of a Chance (Bing Crosby), Just an Echo in the Valley (Rudy Vallee), Lazy Bones (Ted Lewis), and Night and Day (Eddy Duchin).
Firestone battery factories set a new standard with a 13-plate battery that supplied the power to lift a 250-pound steel ball 1,080 times every day — power enough to start an average car 247 times a day.
Speaking of cars, a new car cost $550. Other living expenses in 1933 include a new house ($5,759). The average yearly income was $1,555, while the average monthly rent was $18. Movie tickets cost 25 cents each; gasoline, 10 cents per gallon; and first-class postage stamps, three cents each.
Granulated sugar cost 59 cents for 10 pounds; Vitamin D milk, 42 cents per gallon; ground coffee, 35 cents per pound; bacon, 25 cents per pound; eggs, 16 cents per dozen; fresh ground hamburger, 11 cents per pound; and fresh baked bread, seven cents per loaf.
I wonder, where have all the socalled good times gone?
One day, I said to my late father, “Dad, it must have been nice to live in the good ol’ days.” He responded, “Burton, my boy, the good ol’ days were not all that good.” Perhaps he was wise beyond his 91 years.