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Fur Prices then and Now

I have this framed and hanging on the wall at camp. Last week I was looking at it and it dawned on me...this price list is 100 years old. A century! These were the fur prices offered by Simon Summerfield & Co. based out of St. Louis, MO, in 1920.

Back then, even an "ordinary" extra large raccoon skin was fetching $11-14. For the sake of comparison, factoring in inflation, $10 in 1920 had approximately the same buying power as $130 today. Getting $100 for a fisher back then was like receiving $1,300 today!

Also interesting...look at the bottom row of furs in the small boxes. House cat: $1.00. Wild cat (feral cat): $3.00. This was before laws came about that required garment manufacturers to label which fur was actually used in each product -- I believe this was around World War II, but not completely sure. But I do know this is also why skunk fur was so valuable and in demand back then. Once people knew the coats were made from skunk pelts, the price of skunk declined.

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