Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 4 weeks ago

Why can't I go back and live in 1837 in the United States when things weren't so bad like they are now?

Too bad you can't go back in time and live the good life.

13 Answers

  • Fred
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago
    Favourite answer

    Life in 1837 was not easy like you think.  Work days were generally 12 hours a day 6 days a week for

     low pay.  Work was hard and very physical for most and many were killed or disabled at their work with no compensation.

      City streets stank with horse manure everywhere and much of the human and animal waste washed into rivers and the sea polluting the water so badly there were no fish around these areas and you could not swim or fish in these waters.  Many children died before they were 5 years old and if you go to an old cemetery you will see huge numbers of young children's graves.  Disease was rife with no antibiotics and many people died of bacterial diseases.  A simple scratch could be a death sentence.  Things like surgery and dentistry were done in agony as there was no anesthetic.  Most people struggled on poor wages and poor living conditions with many families living in single room with no bathroom facilities.  A bath was a Saturday night event with the whole family using the same water in their tin bath tub in the middle of the room.  Many people stank of body odour.

      Young men were not allowed to take a girl on a date alone and a member of the girl's family had to chaperone to be sure the girl was not taken advantage of.  There was no contraception so every sex act was the possibility of another kid to feed.  Families were often 10 kids to feed so generally families were kept poor keeping up to the needs of all the children.  

      Sunday was to be spent with family at church in the morning and if you were lucky a church picnic afterwards.  Evenings were spent either at home doing something like reading or maybe going out to band practice.  All reading would be done to candle or smelly kerosene lamps.  Poor families may have several children in one double bed with 2 or 3 up each end of the bed. and 4 or 6 children sharing one bed.  For most teenagers there was no privacy and definitely no phones or computers.

      Believe me modern society is way easier than back then and if you had to go back to 1837 likely you would have hated it.

  • John P
    Lv 7
    3 weeks ago

    Note to 'Ihategrowing up': 1937 would give you only 5 years before the USA was forced into WW2.  You would probably be old enough to be drafted into the army before the end of WW2.

  • L
    Lv 5
    4 weeks ago

    Even going back to the 1940's through the 1960's is way better and safer than today.  Right now, there's probably tons of people who wish they had a Time Machine.....

  • 4 weeks ago

    Why 1837 exactly? I’d prefer the 1860s if I had to live in 19th century America, but 1937 would be so unbelievably frickin sweet.

    I’d prefer a world without COVID, AIDS, technology everywhere I go, gay pride marches, but I would miss TV, better medicine, and air conditioning.

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  • Marli
    Lv 7
    4 weeks ago

    I will add to Fred's list. 

    American women in 1837 were pregnant more often than women are today. More American women died in childbirth or from sepsis due to the helper's unclean hands then. Abortion was illegal. In some regions, it was a capital crime.  If you aborted the fetus, you could die by hanging or from septicemia.

    Milk was not pasteurized. That might not be so bad, but people from our century don't have the antibodies to resist the pathogens in milk. Cow-pox. Small-pox. Tuberculosis.  Polio.  Cholera. A 19th century person was likely to die or at least become ugly from a disease. So far we have only a Covid-19 pandemic.

    Few if any police. No fingerprinting in 1837. Certainly no DNA testing. Photography was a new invention and a lengthy, expensive process. A person rich enough to have his  photo taken had to sit motionless for a half hour. If an up-to-date police or corrections department decided to use the new camera technology, it would have to tie down the criminal and keep him down.  There were laws against acts we don't believe are illegal. More illegal acts deserved the death penalty.

  • Anonymous
    4 weeks ago

    Because nobody has ever invented a time machine

  • Anonymous
    4 weeks ago

    It can only be assumed that you're not exactly batting a thousand in life right now, so it's doubtful that going back in time 183 years would fix your problems. What skills do you possess that might possibly make you a productive member to any society in existence at that time? They didn't have burger joints back then, so you'd likely be worse off than you are here in the present. 

  • 1465
    Lv 6
    4 weeks ago

    Every time period had its problems. 1837's major issue was what was later called the "Panic of 1837" which dealt with a failing economy among other problems.

    This, ironically, was just 2 years after Andrew Jackson paid off the national debt. It just goes to show that the banking industry was plagued with uncontrollable spending back then.

  • 4 weeks ago

    The average life expectancy back then in the US was in the 30s.  It was an absolutely horrible life by today's standards.  I really hope your question is sarcastic and not supremely ignorant and ungrateful.

  • Anonymous
    4 weeks ago

    You realize they didn't have cell phones and play stations back then don't you?

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