Today’s mini-history lesson:
It was a whole lot harder to cut the pie after dinner 150 years ago.
In the mid-1800s, the average American family had seven children. I guess the youngest never got any new clothes until he or she decided to marry.
About 100 years ago, at the start of the 20th century, the average number of kids per family had dropped to a bit over three—by that time, folks had been moving off the farms and shifting to urban life for quite a few years.(1)
Right now the average family has less than two children. In fact, the fertility rate of American women overall has dropped below the biological “replacement rate” of about 2.1 kids.
Immigration is responsible for net population growth in the United States.
(1) Atul Gawande, Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End (New York: Metropolitan Books, Henry Holt and Company, 2014), 21.
Copyright © Richard Carl Subber 2015