Sirloin Steak - 18c A Pound!
An old-time East Dennis resident reminiscing days gone by in that community, recalled the manner of doing business there.
His ledger shows that flour, crackers, beans, and like goods came to his store in barrels and were sold directly to the customer, from the barrels. Lard and butter were sold from firkins (which were small wooden tubs). Fat pork, molasses, and kerosene were sold by bulk from big tubs.
His old record book shows that five dozen eggs were sold for 85 cents. A quart of molasses sold for 12 cents. Yeast cakes were three cents apiece. When at last milk jumped from five to six cents a quart, there was loud and long protest from customers.
We buy salt cod now in neat and small boxes. In those days you could buy a whole quintal (about 112 pounds) for only $3.75. Salt cod was used much more in every home then. Even salt was cheap—ten pounds for 10 cents.
Bananas sold for 20 cents a dozen, and you could buy a full bag of bread flour for only 65 cents.
Meat came by train to South Dennis, and everybody knew when “Meat Day” was at hand. That was when they would lay in both fresh and salted beef.
The cost of the meats ran something like this, according to the old-timer’s record book: thick ribs, 9 cents a pound; rib roasts, 12 to 18 cents a pound; plate beef, seven to 12 cents a pound; and sirloin steak, 18 to 25 cents a pound.
He sold a whole truckload of ice back then for $1.00.
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