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Everyday Life

Everyday life in this period was dramatically different than life in earlier times.
People who lived in log cabins lit and warmed by the light of the fire would be amazed to see fully electric homes with central heat and air conditioning. Where frontier people had a dirt floor, today’s homes have wall-to-wall carpeting or custom wood/stone floors. People who hung their clothing on pegs attached to log walls would wonder at walk-in closets and storage systems.
Most people living from 1975 to the present time took advantage of electronics using them in their homes, cars, schools, and at work.  Dishwashers, microwaves, refrigerators, and stoves were all standards in homes. Living rooms or dens often had entertainment systems with CD players, tape decks, televisions, DVD players, amplifiers, and speakers.
Many electronics came with programmable features. Washers, dishwashers, lights, and heating/air conditioning systems could all be programmed to start at a certain time. People could come home from work with their lights on and the temperature at pre-set levels.
Where frontiersmen had to navigate using the stars, today’s drivers can use satellite-guided systems to get where they want. People today routinely take air flights to get from one place to another.
Life expectancy from birth in 1850 was about 38 years.  By 2000 it had risen to 77 years, primarily due to better medical care and medicines. It has increased for both males and females and for white and black populations.
Religion continues to be important in everyday life, although not as much as in earlier times. In 1950, 75 percent of Americans said religion was very important in their lives. By 2004, 68 percent of Americans described religion as a very important influence on their lives.

Picture Credits:
  • Photograph of the Flume Zoom log water ride. This photo was taken at Opryland USA theme park in Nashville. It shows people riding inside a cart designed to look like a log after coming down the water slide. Metro Nashville Archives
  • Photograph of a modern-day kitchen. This photo was taken in 2007 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee by photographer “dani0010.” It shows three people making preparing food for a birthday party.
  • Photograph showing the sanctuary inside Bellevue Baptist Church. It is one of the largest churches in Tennessee. This photo was taken in 2006 in Memphis by photographers “Ben and Sam.” It shows the congregation watching a large screen as a man is about to be baptized.
  • Photograph showing the inside of the Sommet Center. This photo was taken in 2007 in Nashville by photographer Paul Nicholson. It shows hundreds of fans watching the Nashville Predators play against the Dallas stars.
  • Photograph showing the Clinic Bowl. This photo was taken in 1999 in Nashville during the TSAA Class 3A State Championship game. It shows a Portland High School player about to catch the ball as a Milan High School players attempts to intercept it. The final score was Milan 21 and Portland 14. The Tennessean
  • Photograph showing a home theater. This photo was taken in 2008 by photographer “loudestnoise.” It shows a man preparing to use his new audio and video equipment.
  • Photograph showing a seniors at breakfast. This photo was taken in Tennessee inside the Cracker Barrel restaurant. It shows a group of seniors eating at a large table. Bill Kingsley, The Tennessean
  • Photograph showing two rock climbers. This photo was taken in 2009 in Sewanee, Tennessee. It shows two climbers wearing helmets and using ropes to climb a steep cliff.
  • Photograph showing the Tennessee basketball state championships. This photo was taken in 2004. It shows a player from Fulton High School dribbling the ball away Martin Luther King Magnet High School players. Photo by Amy Smotherman, Knovxville News Sentinel

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