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Engines of Our Ingenuity

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Housework Digital History ID 4512
Historian Ruth Schwartz Cowan offers a remarkable idea. It is that homemakers today work about as long as homemakers did in the 19th century -- still about 50 to 60 hours a week. The load only varies slightly with the number of children being raised. Our homes are served by scores of electric motors -- thousands of computer chips. Yet homemakers work just as long. The big revolution hit between 1920 and 1960 with gas and electric heaters, washers, driers, refrigerators, vacuum cleaners, and mixers.
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Scopes Trial Digital History ID 4511
The year was 1925 -- the town, Dayton, Tennessee. The State Legislature had just passed a bill making it illegal to teach any theory of creation that denied the Genesis account. The ACLU badly wanted a test case they could lose in Tennessee, then take to a higher court. So a few Dayton boosters asked the new PE instructor, John Scopes, to meet with them in Robinson's drugstore. Would he consent to be arrested? Then they could have the big trial in Dayton. It'd put them on the map.
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