San Francisco in the Gold Rush era


Feeling like you are overpaying for rent in today’s market?

It may be assumed that what people paid for housing over a century and a half ago pales in comparison to what housing costs are now.

After researching about the history of where you live, the results of our current reality compared to back in the old days, may be shocking.

The reality is sure to give you a better understanding and appreciation for how much you're currently paying to rent here.

Housing shortages, steep rents and overpriced groceries are issues that San Francisco residents have dealt with for a long time.

As reported in a somewhat recent article in the San Francisco Gate, it was during the Gold Rush that the city was a society and economy like no other city in America.

Before 1849, San Francisco was a sleepy town with a population of 500, but by August it had ballooned to 6,000. The following year, the population blew up to 25,000 residents. Such a fast, radical shift meant that living quarters were at a premium.

In one example, a lot of land that cost $23,000 in 1848 was sold for $300,000 the next year. Adjusted for inflation, that's more than $8 million dollars.

As for food, some of it sent all the way around the horn, some of it a rare local product, was also in high demand. One egg could cost as much as $90 in present-day prices.

If San Franciscans are still curious about how much basic goods and services cost in Gold Rush-era San Francisco, some 1850s prices including inflation-adjusted prices in the modern day can easily be found.

It might just put things in perspective and give one peace of mind when shopping at Whole Foods, for instance.

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