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Predictions from 1900 for the Year 2000
Predictions of the Year 2000 from The Ladies Home Journal of December 1900
[link to www.sandstorming.com]
#1: There will probably be from 350,000,000 to 500,000,000 people in America and
its possessions by the lapse of another century. Nicaragua will ask for
admission to our Union after the completion of the great canal. Mexico will be
next. Europe, seeking more territory to the south of us, will cause many of the
South and Central American republics to be voted into the Union by their own
#2: The American will be taller by from one to two inches. His increase of
stature will result from better health, due to vast reforms in medicine,
sanitation, food and athletics. He will live fifty years instead of thirty-five
as at present – for he will reside in the suburbs. The city house will
practically be no more. Building in blocks will be illegal. The trip from
suburban home to office will require a few minutes only. A penny will pay the
#3: Gymnastics will begin in the nursery, where toys and games will be designed
to strengthen the muscles. Exercise will be compulsory in the schools. Every
school, college and community will have a complete gymnasium. All cities will
have public gymnasiums. A man or woman unable to walk ten miles at a stretch
will be regarded as a weakling.
#4: There Will Be No Street Cars in Our Large Cities. All
hurry traffic will be below or high above ground when brought within city
limits. In most cities it will be confined to broad subways or tunnels,
well lighted and well ventilated, or to high trestles with “moving-sidewalk”
stairways leading to the top. These underground or overhead streets will
teem with capacious automobile passenger coaches and freight with cushioned
wheels. Subways or trestles will be reserved for express trains. Cities, therefore, will be free from all noises.
#5: Trains will run two miles a minute, normally; express trains
one hundred and fifty miles an hour. To go from New York to San Francisco
will take a day and a night by fast express. There will be cigar-shaped
electric locomotives hauling long trains of cars. Cars will, like houses,
be artificially cooled. Along the railroads there will be no smoke, no
cinders, because coal will neither be carried nor burned. There will be no
stops for water. Passengers will travel through hot or dusty country
regions with windows down.
will be cheaper than horses are today. Farmers will own automobile hay-wagons,
automobile truck-wagons, plows, harrows and hay-rakes. A one-pound motor in one
of these vehicles will do the work of a pair of horses or more. Children will
ride in automobile sleighs in winter. Automobiles will have been substituted for
every horse vehicle now known. There will be, as already exist today, automobile
hearses, automobile police patrols, automobile ambulances, automobile street
sweepers. The horse in harness will be as scarce, if, indeed, not even scarcer,
then as the yoked ox is today.
will be air-ships, but they will not successfully compete with surface cars and
water vessels for passenger or freight traffic. They will be maintained as
deadly war-vessels by all military nations. Some will transport men and goods.
Others will be used by scientists making observations at great heights above the
War-Ships and Forts on Wheels. Giant guns will shoot twenty-five miles or more,
and will hurl anywhere within such a radius shells exploding and destroying
whole cities. Such guns will be armed by aid of compasses when used on land or
sea, and telescopes when directed from great heights. Fleets of air-ships,
hiding themselves with dense, smoky mists, thrown off by themselves as they
move, will float over cities, fortifications, camps or fleets. They will
surprise foes below by hurling upon them deadly thunderbolts. These aerial
war-ships will necessitate bomb-proof forts, protected by great steel plates
over their tops as well as at their sides. Huge forts on wheels will dash across
open spaces at the speed of express trains of to-day. They will make what are
now known as cavalry charges. Great automobile plows will dig deep entrenchments
as fast as soldiers can occupy them. Rifles will use silent cartridges.
Submarine boats submerged for days will be capable of wiping a whole navy off
the face of the deep. Balloons and flying machines will carry telescopes of
one-hundred-mile vision with camera attachments, photographing an enemy within
that radius. These photographs as distinct and large as if taken from across the
street, will be lowered to the commanding officer in charge of troops below.
will be telegraphed from any distance.
If there be a battle in China a hundred years hence snapshots of its most
striking events will be published in the newspapers an hour later.
Even to-day photographs are being telegraphed over short distances.
Photographs will reproduce all of Nature’s colors.
will See Around the World. Persons and things of all kinds will be brought
within focus of cameras connected electrically with screens at opposite ends of
circuits, thousands of miles at a span. American audiences in their theatres
will view upon huge curtains before them the coronations of kings in Europe or
the progress of battles in the Orient. The instrument bringing these distant
scenes to the very doors of people will be connected with a giant telephone
apparatus transmitting each incidental sound in its appropriate place. Thus the
guns of a distant battle will be heard to boom when seen to blaze, and thus the
lips of a remote actor or singer will be heard to utter words or music when seen
Mosquitoes nor Flies. Insect screens will be unnecessary.
Mosquitoes, house-flies and roaches will have been practically exterminated.
Boards of health will have destroyed all mosquito haunts and breeding-grounds,
drained all stagnant pools, filled in all swamp-lands, and chemically treated
all still-water streams. The extermination of the horse and its stable
will reduce the house-fly.
#12: Peas as Large as Beets. Peas and beans will be as large as
beets are to-day. Sugar cane will produce twice as much sugar as the sugar
beet now does. Cane will once more be the chief source of our sugar
supply. The milkweed will have been developed into a rubber plant.
Cheap native rubber will be harvested by machinery all over this country.
Plants will be made proof against disease microbes just as readily as man is
to-day against smallpox. The soil will be kept enriched by plants which
take their nutrition from the air and give fertility to the earth.
#13: Strawberries as Large as Apples will be eaten by our
great-great-grandchildren for their Christmas dinners a hundred years hence.
Raspberries and blackberries will be as large. One will suffice for the
fruit course of each person. Strawberries and cranberries will be grown
upon tall bushes. Cranberries, gooseberries and currants will be as large
as oranges. One cantaloupe will supply an entire family. Melons,
cherries, grapes, plums, apples, pears, peaches and all berries will be
seedless. Figs will be cultivated over the entire United States.
#14: Black, Blue and Green Roses. Roses will be as large as
cabbage heads. Violets will grow to the size of orchids. A pansy
will be as large in diameter as a sunflower. A century ago the pansy
measured but half an inch across its face. There will be black, blue and
green roses. It will be possible to grow any flower in any color and to
transfer the perfume of a scented flower to another which is odorless.
Then may the pansy be given the perfume of the violet.
#15: No Foods will be Exposed. Storekeepers who expose food to
air breathed out by patrons or to the atmosphere of the busy streets will be
arrested with those who sell stale or adulterated produce. Liquid-air
refrigerators will keep great quantities of food fresh for long intervals.
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