“Social Media” of 1916

One of the more recent things I was delighted to find in my trunk of letters is a copy of The Haralson Sentinel from June 1, 1916. Upon turning to the last page, I was really intrigued to find brief synopses of everyday life, much like the modern day Facebook or Twitter status updates.

From barbed wire to the teapot, there are so many inventions that have never changed since their inception. As we can see in this excerpt from The Haralson Sentinel, “Social Media” is a concept that existed even in the early 1900s, its platform has just changed over time. Even over 100 years ago we were interested (nosy?) neighbors, relishing in our desire for connection with each other.

In order to fully understand what life was like during this time, I’d like to show you this video of New York City in the year 1911 from the Museum of Modern Art’s archives. The first time I saw this footage I watched it over and over again, totally in awe of how much life has changed. Keep in mind that this footage was created only five years before the “Local News” article I found in The Haralson Sentinel. These amazing pieces of history also illustrate the differences between small town and big city life during the early 1900s.



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Welcome, I'm Jessica. I renovated and moved into my grandparents' old home in early 2018. When my grandmother Jane was alive, she loved to sit outside on a swing with her cat Boots (who still lives here) and read. As we were cleaning up around the house I found a box of letters sitting in a swing outside that she was going through in the time before she passed. I stored them away and recently started reading through them myself. 100 Years of Letters is intended to share those family letters (some of which are over 100 years old) with the world and to keep the history behind them alive. Curl up with your coffee, a cozy blanket, and possibly a cat, and join me on this journey through history!

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