Above is a photograph of my Great-Great Grandfather. I recently had the privilege of acquiring it to scan from a distant relative. While looking at his likeness for the first time I began to muse about what his life was like.
Great-Great Grandfather did not have many of the conveniences we now take for granted. He did not have a telephone, a computer, the internet, or even electricity. He did not have a radio, TV, CD, DVD, or movies. Plastic had not been invented. If he had an automobile it would have only been in the later years of his life. Great-Great Grandmother did not have a dishwasher, clothes washer, microwave oven, crock-pot, electric range or even a sealing bowl such as Tupperware. There was no Glad wrap for leftovers, no freezer or refrigerator. Ice was easy to come by in the winter but to have ice in the summer one would cut it in blocks during the winter, storing it in the icehouse insulated by the earth and sawdust. Most icehouses would not keep ice much past early July in our area. An ice-cold drink during the heat of August was not to be had. A trip into town was normally planned much in advance as the nearest town was ten miles away. Shopping would require a full day, as the travel time would take most of it.
In this photograph G-G Grandfather is posing with his horse. This is much the same as a man today posing with his car. It was his transportation. The horse was also his farm tractor. I have found horses in many of the old family photos as they were a necessity, not a luxury at that time.
I am confident that G-G Grandfather had no inkling that his likeness would one day be posted on the World Wide Web for all to see, for it would be many years before anyone would even conceive of a pocket calculator let alone a computer.
Great-Great Grandfather also did not have monthly utility bills, auto insurance, homeowners insurance, health insurance, auto repairs, gasoline cost, credit card payments, or income tax.
I am also confident that he did not miss any of these things as we do not miss those things that have not been invented yet. We do not miss that which we do not know of.
Great-Great Grandfather had a full life with a wife, nine children and a farm which provided them with their sustenance, occupation, and income.