After the War of Northern Aggression, and prior to the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, there were numerous banking panics and failures in the United States. The "Black Friday" excerpt (below) from The Famous Old Trusty incubator catalog of 1918 references some of these panics.
The Panic of 1893 was a depression that lasted four years. 503 banks closed down. Here is a brief description of the 1893 depression...
The Panic of 1893 was a national economic crisis set off by the collapse of two of the country's largest employers, the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad and the National Cordage Company. Following of the failure of these two companies, a panic erupted on the stock market. Hundreds of businesses had overextended themselves, borrowing money to expand their operations. When the financial crisis struck, banks and other investment firms began calling in loans, causing hundreds of business bankruptcies across the United States. Banks, railroads, and steel mills especially fell into bankruptcy. Over fifteen thousand businesses closed during the Panic of 1893.
Unemployment rates soared to twenty to twenty-five percent in the United States during the Panic of 1893. Homelessness skyrocketed, as workers were laid off and could not pay their rent or mortgages. The unemployed also had difficulty buying food due to the lack of income. (source link)
The 1913 Federal Reserve Act was supposed to solve all those economic problems by creating a centralized, private, national Bank. The newly established, euphemistically named, Federal Reserve would, ostensibly, "provide the nation with a safer, more flexible, and more stable monetary and financial system."
Sixteen years later, came the Great Depression, followed, in time, by numerous economic recessions. And now, after 105 years, the purchasing power of the American dollar has dropped over 96% (link). Well, so much for stabilization of the financial and monetary system.
But it is to be expected. Centralization of power always serves to benefit the centralizers most. But only for awhile. Then it fails. Every time. Think Babylon. Or, think Gordon Lightfoot, and The Pride Of Man...
It's all us gullible "little people" who suffer the most when an economic crisis hits, but the Famous Old Trusty catalog of 1918 had some down-to-earth advice for common folks looking to survive another round of hard times.
Raise chickens! Sell eggs! Better yet, get yourself an Old Trusty to hatch your own eggs. And you can sell pullets to your neighbors too.
This short excerpt, written by H.H. Johnson, owner of the Old Trusty company, provides us with an historical insight into severe financial crisis and "prepping" 100 years ago.
Black Friday, September 24, 1869, was before my time, also the panic of '73 (Sept. 18, 1873), but the panic of 1893 made a lasting impression. There were a few years following when the hens laid golden eggs. The owner of a flock was panic proof.
As usual, I want to tell a story. We came to Clay Center in 1894. The times were hard, good and hard. The only man in the community making real money was a German farmer, who had about 150 hens. He was making more than a living. The hens paid their way as well as their owner's way, with something to spare.
When the hen shines to the best advantage, or when we appreciate them the most, is about the time when we need their earnings. Most of western Kansas and Nebraska can remember the great drouth of 1894. The settlers who had good flocks of hens stayed and held down their homesteads, which are now valuable farms, while those who did not have a good supply of the panic proof hens hiked out to their wife's folks farther east.
Give a widow and her family $100 worth of hens and she will not only get along, but will lay by some money.
When $100 worth of poultry will do these things for a widow, it would seem that a little bigger investment would be justifiable on the part of any farmer or person who has room to raise poultry. I know it would pay them big. We have thousands of customers who are making it pay big. They use from one to a half dozen incubators and as many brooders.
The world has changed a lot in 100 years. Now we have Walmart, and eggs are cheap at Walmart. At least, for now they are.
|(click picture for enlarged view)|