Roaring 20s Research Article from History Firsthand

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While electricity made life easier, nothing changed the American landscape more than the famous Model T Ford automobile, or "Tin Lizzy," which cost only about $440 by the middle of the decade.

The first primitive automobile was invented in the late 1890s, and the Model T had been in production since 1908, although only 18,600 of the cars were sold that year. Even by 1915, there were less than 2.5 million cars in a nation of 100 million people. By 1920, however, over 9 million Americans owned cars; by 1930, that number had skyrocketed to 26.5 million. In addition to Fords, Americans bought Chevrolets, Cadillacs, Oldsmobiles, Packards, Duesenbergs, Pierce-Arrows, and cars with such now-obscure names as Excelsior, Kissel, Locomobile, and Roamer.

In The Century, Peter Jennings and Todd Brewster assess the impact of these cars:

The burgeoning automobile age established a new sense of freedom and individuality: people no longer had to make their plans according...

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This section contains 487 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Roaring 20s Encyclopedia Article
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Roaring 20s from Greenhaven. ©2001-2006 by Greenhaven Press, Inc., an imprint of The Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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