I came across this book in my collection as I was moving, “1,000 Spare Time Money Making Ideas”. This book caught my attention mainly because who doesn’t love making an extra dollar?
The book’s copyright is 1933 and had cost $1 at the time. This book was released at during the Great Depression, a very hard and trying time for America. This book was meant for anyone, as it says on the cover — A practical guide for young and middle aged men and women, students, boys and girls in the art of space time money making at home.
The stock market crash of 1929 sent everyone into a frenzy. By 1932, 15 million people were unemployed. That was more than 20% of the population! American’s needed this book to spark some type of hope that they would be able to make a little money to be able to put food on the table.
The chapters are categorized by gender and different occupational categories. The best part about this book? It is still very relevant but to an extent. While there is obviously no jobs involving a computer or modern day technology, the jobs that it does offer are great starting points that involve little to no investment to start up. Here are some suggestions for a person living in 1933 that needs some extra side cash.
For the women, there are a lot of job suggestions that deal with children— camp counselor, tutor, nanny, and such. Real estate, laundry service, cleaning services, and professional shopping are also options for ladies.
Men have jobs that deal a lot with handiwork. There are also freelance secretary positions, part time accounting, typewriter cleaning service, and addressing envelopes. You read that correctly, addressing envelopes.
Chapter VIII. The Creative Worker holds a whole new meaning than it does today. In today’s world, that is much more technology based work. In 1933, creative work included writing humorous articles, cartooning, an entertainment agent, dancer, lecturer, poster maker, paint furniture, and proofreading. These areas are all still very relevant today and with the write marketing via the internet, people could move from side hustle to main gig.
My favorite chapter is XXI. Unusual and Strange Ways of Money Making. Some things include: frog farming, converting tin cans into art, gathering angle worms for science, rat culturist, rattlesnake breeding, beach combing, fortune telling, grave decorating, making cow horn art, making baskets from armadillos, donate blood, or volunteer for scientific experiments.
I can promise you that I made none of that up.
Old books are more than just dust collectors. They show us what it was like to live in another decade and what people’s lives were like. During the depression, it was much harder and work ethic was tested often. Times get tough but with modern technology, we have thousands of ways to make extra money.
And maybe, just maybe, some basic foundation can spark an incredible business venture.
Also, if anyone decides to try any of the unusual and strange jobs, please send pictures. Thanks.