America in the 1920s: Growth of the Middle Class and a Consumer Economy

The 1920s was a decade of increasing conveniences for the middle class. The 1920s was a decade of increasing conveniences for the middle class. New products made household chores easier and led to more leisure time. Products previously too expensive became affordable. New forms of financing allowed every family to spend beyond their current means.[…]

The Middle Classes in the 19th Century: Etiquette and Upward Mobility

Examining the expansion of the middle classes in the 19th century that led to a new emphasis on upward mobility, etiquette and conspicuous consumption. Introduction For centuries the aristocracy had been the most powerful section of British society. But from the last quarter of the 18th century, the middle classes began to grow in power[…]

Versailles’ Drinking Water and the Last Service of the Marly Machine, 1859–1963

Since the foundation of Versailles by King Louis XIV, the city often lacked water. In 1859 Versailles and its more than twenty neighboring communities were presented with the new Marly Machine—a hydraulic pump that formed the cornerstone of Versailles’ drinking water supply. This event reinforced the dependence of Versailles on the Seine River and the[…]

An Endless Sediment Story: The First Five Decades of the Canal de Marseille

Up until this epoch, water resources consisted of an old and damaged medieval aqueduct. Operational since 1847, the 80 kilometer long Canal de Marseille, built by famous Swiss civil engineer Franz Mayor de Montricher, has allowed great improvement in the water supply in the city of Marseille, southeast of France. Indeed, during the first quarter[…]

A History of Brazil from the Precolonial Era to the Kingdom Period

Brazil’s history can be divided into five economic periods, each characterized by a dominant export product. By Rex A. Hudson The Indigenous Population In 1500 Pedro Álvares Cabral’s fleet, which was en route to India, landed at Porto Seguro in what is now the state of Bahia. The territory that comprises modern Brazil had a[…]

A History of Nicaragua from the Precolonial Period to National Independence

Throughout its history, Nicaragua has suffered from political instability, civil war, poverty, foreign intervention, and natural disasters. By Tim Merrill Precolonial Period Present-day Nicaragua is located south of the pre-Columbian culture areas of the Maya and the Aztec in Mexico and northern Central America. Although conventional wisdom states that the culture of lower Central America[…]