Roll of Thunder Budget

 

Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry takes place during the Great Depression, a time when most people were very poor.  The weather was pretty bad too, so farmers couldn’t grow as much.

Below is a list of what various items cost in 1932.  Assume that you were a ________________________.

 

 

Then and Now: Prices

WOMEN'S CLOTHES

THEN

NOW

Winter Coat

$28.00

 

Leather or Suede Bag

$2.25

 

Bathrobe

$1.00

 

Sweater

$1.00

 

MEN'S CLOTHES

THEN

NOW

Broadcloth Shirt

$1.00

 

Wool Sweater

$1.00

 

Bathrobe

$4.90

 

Overcoat

$18.50

 

Pocket Watch

$15.00

 

GAMES AND TOYS

THEN

NOW

Sled that Steers

$3.95 - $8.95

 

Deck of Cards

$.75

 

Novel (hardcover)

$1.50

 

Ping Pong Table

$23.50 to $37.50

 

Mechanical Toys

3 for$.59

 

Doll

$1.95

 

ITEMS FOR THE HOME

THEN

NOW

Table Lamp

$1.00

 

Telephone

$15.75

 

Radio

$49.95

 

Portable Electric Sewing Machine

$23.95

 

Electric Washing Machine

$33.50

 

Gas Stove

$19.95

 

Gauze Bandages (ten yards)

$.39

 

FOOD AND ENTERTAINMENT

THEN

NOW

Movie Tickets

$.15

 

Good Meal in a Restaurant (dinner)

$1.00

 

For extra credit, fill in current prices.

Then and Now: Wages

WEEKLY WAGES (general averages)

Taxes

THEN

NOW

Manufacturing--Production Worker

$3.40

$16.89

$500

Cook

$3.00

$15.00

$236

Doctor

$12.00

$61.11

$1800

Accountant

$9.00

$45.00

$700

Sharecropper

$1.65

$8.00

$150

 

 

 

Based on how much you make, what would you buy?  Why?  Make a monthly budget for your family, assuming you’re married and have 4 kids.  You should spend at least $25 on food, as well as whatever you have to spend on taxes.  Use the chart on this page.

 

Total for the month (weekly wage x 4): ________________________

 

Item                                                                 Cost                                                    Reason

 

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