Arts and Architecture
Skyscrapers like the New York Life and Chrysler buildings soared,
while Frank Lloyd Wright fitted his structures naturally into their
landscapes. The rounded Art Deco style began with the
International Art Exposition in Paris in 1925. At the time, it was
In the first talking moving picture, John Barrymore played Don
Juan. The first Oscars were awarded in 1927, and the Best Picture
was Paramountâ€™s Wings.
Radio and Flight
Radio was the latest technology.
NBC and CBS began broadcasting
programs featuring news, advertising,
and entertainment, including classical
music, jazz, and such popular
sentimental ballads as â€œIâ€™ll Be
With You in Apple Blossom Time.â
Charles Lindbergh made the first
transatlantic flight. Business people
flew from coast to coast on a regular
schedule. Even the U. S. Mail took
to the air.
Music and Literature
Twenty-four-year-old George Gershwin had won a reputation as a
serious composer with the jazzy Rhapsody in Blue and was
working on An American in Paris, inspired by the Lost Generation
of expatriate artists and writers who lived and wrote in Paris
between the wars. Rebelling against Victorian mores, disillusioned
by the â€œwar to end all wars,â€� they wrote frankly about sex
and changed the face of American culture.
Jazz and blues streamed from New Yorkâ€™s Cotton Club, as
well as from clubs in â€œthat toddling town,â€� Chicago, and â
€œWay Down Yonder in New Orleans.â€�
The 19th amendment
extended democracy by
enfranchising the majority of
Two amendments to the
U.S. Constitution brought
major changes. The 18th
amendment prohibited the
production and sale of
alcoholic beverages. It failed
to bring the anticipated
reforms, leading instead to
All that movement was sparked by the automobile industry,
which boomed in the 1920's. Henry Ford used assembly lines to
produce the Model T, which fell in cost from $850 in 1908 to
$290 in 1925.
America in the 1920's was on the move--from the country to the
city, from an agrarian to an industrial economy, from handcrafts to
and Clara Bow
The Roaring 20's
In the 1920â€™s, when our house was being built, architecture
wasnâ€™t the only area experiencing revolutionary change. It
was the period after World War I and before the Great
Depression, and the whole country was casting off its inhibitions.
Women had won the right to vote--and to shorten their skirts,
smoke cigarettes, and dance the Charleston. It was the era of
Prohibition, bootleg whiskey, speakeasies and gangsters.