Coming up with a name for this next blog post was not easy. That much I will say. Have you ever watched a movie that took place in the early 1900’s? Have you ever read a book and imagined what it would be like to live without electricity? Have you ever wanted to go jump into your favorite sitcom you watched with your parents growing up?
As I was scrolling through these photos I began to think of what it was like to live in a time like from before. Growing up we hear our parents and grandparents tell us how easy it was for them before technology took over. They talk about having to go outside to play and not having a television to watch. Heck, I even heard stories of what it was like to grow up in a house with out running water.
When I was growing up I was treated to movies and storybooks where princesses lived in castles with candles aglow. When I grew older I began to read books, like the American Girl doll series and Nancy Drew, across different time periods where my imagination would wander. In the American Girl Doll books, there were stories about girls having to walk to school rather than take the school bus. There were even stories where their education was limited based on their gender and social norms during the time period. But, the part that took me into those books the most were the historical events that were taking place. From the American Revolution to World War II, I would leave reading these books wondering what it was really like to live through those time periods. There are times when I wonder what questions I will be asked from children about my childhood and the events that happened.
In Nancy Drew, there seemed to always be a time when she would get into a pickle and unable to contact anyone quick enough due to their being no cellphone or computer. Today, we depend so much on these things that we forget that there was a time period where they didn’t even exist. When I first started reading Nancy Drew, I would always ask why she didn’t just call someone or search the internet for the answer. I would ask these questions aloud to get the same answer from my parents, which was: they weren’t invented yet.
I would always ask my parents what it was like to grow up without computers. I would have no problem asking my grandparents what it was like not having a television and having to walk to school. They would shrug and tell me that they didn’t think anything different as there was no such thing. I have wondered what it would be like to time travel to a period to see what it was like for myself, specifically the roaring twenties, World War II, and Shakespearean times. I want to go to Woodstock to experience it first hand, go to a soda shop in the 1900’s in New York City, and see the Hindenburg fly over before tragedy struck. These are moments stuck in time that we see, however, we can’t experience them all first hand. But each time I am reminded that there are things we have now that they didn’t have then. I can’t help but wonder what it would be like to wake up in a time period with no electricity, no television, no running water and no computers.
How different would that be? It would be quite the adjustment. Going in the past to hear Paul Revere race through Boston to announce “The British are Coming” and to hear Abraham Lincoln deliver the Gettysburg Address and to meet Harriet Tubman, Edgar Allan Poe and Elizabeth I. These are just a few examples of things I want to experience that are frozen in time. A moment from years ago, a person who left an impact that changed lives for better and a time when things seemed simpler. All that is left from these times are stories that survive today because we don’t want to forget them.