The Phaserl


As Time Marches on Gold Holds its Value

by Brad Sebion,, SGT Report:

In recent weeks, I had the opportunity to page through a Sears Catalog from 1902. This phone book sized piece of history was an eye opener. From the items that no longer exist, to the cheap price tags attached to everything, this was the Amazon of its day.

Who wouldn’t want a cheap buggy for twenty two dollars? If you were big timer, you could roll down the street in one worth thirty five, and have a cover over your head. A couple items in particular that caught my attention were men’s suits and guns.

In 1902 you could buy a fine men’s suit for five dollars. With one twenty dollar gold piece, you could buy four of them. Keep in mind; a twenty dollar gold piece (1oz of gold) and a twenty dollar bill were interchangeable. Today that piece of gold would be valued at $1350. If you walk into Men’s Warehouse, and are looking to buy a suit of some quality, purchasing a three hundred and forty dollar suit would be the equivalent of buying the five dollar suit when measured in gold. The same goes for gun purchases.

A single barrel shot gun was priced at six dollars. Again, when priced in gold, that would buy you the equivalent of something worth four hundred dollars today. I’m sure you could walk into a big box store and buy a gun at that price. The same was true with hundreds of items listed throughout the catalog.

Gold holds its value, and will continue to do so in the future. I understand why “traditional” money managers steer clear of it, as there is no monetary incentive for them to hold gold. I believe that will change if negative interest rates begin to set it. It’s ironic, that central banks around the world continue to hold and add more gold as this paper currency experiment for the past forty five years continues to unravel.

Brad Sebion

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8 comments to As Time Marches on Gold Holds its Value

  • Ed_B

    Going all the way back to 1902 is interesting but not easy to relate to something that existed when my grandfather was only 6 years old.

    A more modern view of this was that when I was a kid in the late 1950s, either a big juicy hamburger with all the trimmings or a gallon of gasoline for the car each cost a quarter. But that was a US 90% silver quarter. Today, the pot-metal quarters we have don’t buy nearly as much as do the old silver quarters. In fact, one of those old silver quarters has about the same value as 14 of the new quarters. This means that today’s money has about 7% of the value of the old silver money, with 93% having been lost to inflation.

    Now, with silver in the $19 an oz. area, a US 90% silver quarter contains about $3.50 worth of silver. You can still find a decent hamburger for that amount and a gallon of gas is a buck or so less than that. Yep, silver still holds most, all, or more of its purchasing power, even after half a century and more.

    This is why I stack… not so much for me but for my kids and grand kids. In another 10+ years, who knows what the value of paper money will be… if anything. But silver and gold will continue to be valued as they have been for the past 5,000+ years. Silver and gold… REAL money that can’t be conjured up out of thin air and then traded for REAL goods and services, doesn’t inflate or deflate, and can’t be devalued at the whim of those in power.

    Keeping all of our wealth in US paper dollars is not one of the better ideas out there. When people do that, they are putting their financial future, and perhaps their lives, into the hands of the national politicians and the bankers. Now, there’s a group of lice in anyone’s book. They are not trustworthy because they haven’t EARNED our trust. They are out for themselves and not for any of us.

    So, protect what you’ve worked so hard to earn and keep for your family. Don’t let it be taken from you via bail ins, bail outs, too big to fail, zero interest rates, or any of the other financial slight-of-hand nonsense that seems so popular these days. It’s all illusion, where gold and silver are money… REAL money, and not that fly by night junk that is passed off as money today.

  • Craig Escaped Detroit

    I have here, (picked it up at a yard sale for a couple bucks) the “1929, Spring & Summer- Montgomery Wards Catalog”.

    That was America at PEAK prosperity just a few months before the stock market crash of 1929.
    Men’s Wool Suit with Silk lining= $23.

    I’d like to see the SAME catalog, but from the year 1934-1938 (they consider the “Great Depression” was at its WORST bottom in 1933, so I want to see how the prices dropped and the selections got eliminated when the catalog reflected the depression era prices.

    But this 1929 “PRE-Depression” catalog, is very interesting, SO much is available for sale, and everybody thought the “good life” would continue forever.

    Nobody was thinking about stacking gold or filling the pantry with a year’s worth of food. Nobody paid off the house or farm debt, and they were all completely blind-sided by the crash.

    Electricity, gas, the telephone and radio were still very new, and not everybody had those things yet.

    The ICE-BOX was still the way to keep food cold at home.

    About 7 years ago, I started hunting (Craig’s List, Ebay, etc) for a Cast iron WOOD BURNING kitchen stove, and found the “perfect” compromise-COMBO stove for $150. All the “wood-burning stoves also use “coal”), but this stove, was from the era when GAS was becoming more and more available, it is a wood burner that also has 4 GAS burners (I think it may be setup for propane).

    One of the “coal-grates” is broken, but all the parts are there, and I can probably find somebody here who can weld the cast-iron grate, or perhaps I can put steel pipe sleeves into the broken sections to re-attach the broken part. It’s old, rusty, but looks pretty nice. It also has the “Top warming oven”.

    There are plenty of “antique” gas stoves for sale on Ebay, and so many of them look gorgeously strange. And the COLOR schemes often include mint-green, or blue, etc. Such a nice difference from today’s kitchen ranges. NO electronic thermostats, no fancy things to break or quit working.

    I’m debating on what I’d have to remove from my kitchen to install this heavy MONSTER. But having the propane & wood burning stove, all in one, gets me pretty excited.

    The ONE thing that I wish was different, is that MY antique stove, has the stove pipe exhaust, located BEHIND the back-plate of the stove (so this requires the stove to be pulled away from the wall further away (fire safety). I’d have preferred the design that puts the exhaust pipe in front of the stove’s “back wall” so you can slide the stove closer to the kitchen wall.

    I will install a fireproof flooring under it, and fireproof material behind it, and OVER it too. (I may also have to install fireproof areas on both SIDES of it too. I’ll figure that out when I start the “construction phase” of the project.) “Hardi-backer” board might be just right, or not? Perhaps something like Hardi-board with a top layer or corrugated roofing sheet metal? (those corrugations allow for some air circulation and would help keep things “cooler” behind the sheet metal. Ugly? Yes, but would be just the right “Fashion” for a 1930-1940 era wood burning stove.)

    Safety before fashion.

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