Wednesday, May 22, 2024
HomeBudgetLife and Fines of the Forties

Life and Fines of the Forties

So right here’s one thing fairly nerdy I simply did:

I learn our metropolis’s ordinance codes from the Forties cowl to cowl – all 200+ pages 😂

Don’t be jealous!!

Picked it as much as see how completely different life and occasions had been again within the day, however as soon as I obtained going I couldn’t put it down… Do you know that it was as soon as unlawful in our metropolis to bounce from 2am-8am in the course of the week? Otherwise you weren’t allowed to work on Sundays?! Otherwise you’d get fined for spitting on the sidewalk or inserting carcasses of useless animals on the street?! I imply – COME ON! Should you can’t place a great carcass right here and there, the place’s the enjoyment in residing???!

I’m actually a bit unhappy it’s throughout… Between the antiquated passages and that lovely “previous e book” scent, I used to be entertained fairly properly for a scorching minute. Although I did discover on the market’s a good *earlier* model of the code from the late 1800s, so I’ll must focus my vitality on monitoring that all the way down to proceed the social gathering… I guess occasions had been even wilder again then! 😉

For now although, listed below are a number of the extra attention-grabbing snippets from the Forties… Together with what occurs if you happen to dare mess with the regulation 😉

We’ll begin off with one thing you could or might not be acquainted with these days – quarantining! Adopted by venereal illnesses, which hopefully you’re not as acquainted with however in case you are, not less than you’re not handled as a pariah anymore!

Let’s get to the enjoyable…

For reference, $1.00 in 1940 is value about $21.16 in as we speak’s {dollars}, and $100 is value round $2,116.26.


Quarantine of Contagious and Infectious Ailments — “Instantly upon receipt of the knowledge that any case of smallpox, diphtheria, scarlet fever, scarlatina, measles or different contagious or infectious illness exists within the metropolis, or inside one mile thereof, it shall be the responsibility of the well being officer to go to the case and in his discretion set up a strict quarantine or isolation of all or any individuals on the premises, or to take away the case to a detention hospital or camp, and quarantine individuals remaining for such time, as in his discretion, could also be needed.

He shall report back to the superintendent of police the names of all individuals violating quarantine and the superintendent shall thereupon trigger the arrest and removing to a detention camp of any individual disobeying quarantine orders, and upon the discharge of such individual from the detention camp, he shall be fined by the police justice not lower than $5.00 or greater than $25.00.”

(Think about being arrested or fined for disobeying PUBLIC HEALTH ORDERS?? Covid would have regarded rather a lot in another way if measures like these had been in play in the course of the first components of the pandemic, hoo-boy… Might have had our complete nationwide debt paid off from individuals refusing to put on masks alone!)

Bringing Contagion Into the Metropolis — “Any individual or individuals who, with out a allow from the well being officer, shall knowingly, carry into the bounds of the town any individual recognized or suspected to have smallpox, scarlet fever, diphtheria, or some other extreme contagious illnesses, or who shall, with out such allow, knowingly carry into the town the physique of any individual having died of smallpox, scarlet fever, diphtheria, or any extreme contagious illness, shall be fined not lower than $25.00 nor greater than $450.00.”

(That’s $500-$9,500 in as we speak’s {dollars}! Hefty!)

Venereal Ailments — “Syphilis, gonorrhea and chancroid are hereby designated as venereal illnesses, and are hereby acknowledged and declared to be contagious, communicable, infectious and harmful to the general public well being. Town well being officer is hereby given the ability, for the aim of defending the general public well being, to quarantine and isolate all circumstances of venereal illnesses prescribed in part 1 of this chapter, when in his opinion they’re a menace to the general public well being and of the residents of the town.”


Report of Attending Physicians — “All physicians in attendance at any hospital or establishment, or who’re prescribing for or attending any non-public affected person troubled with any of mentioned venereal illnesses, or any doctor having information that any individual is affected by any of mentioned illnesses, shall inside three days after acquiring such information, report all such circumstances, giving identify, handle and occupation of the individual to the town well being officer.”

(Additionally utilized to druggists, hospitals, sanitariums and different establishments by which sufferers had been being handled for mentioned venereal illnesses…)

“Any individual, agency or company violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction, be fined in a sum to not exceed $300 or imprisoned not exceeding 90 days, or each fined and imprisoned on the discretion of the court docket.”

Spitting on Sidewalks, on Road Crossings or Public Locations — “No individual shall expectorate on any sidewalk or road crossing or in any church or public constructing or on the steps or doorways thereof, or the steps or doorways of any retailer or workplace constructing, or on the ground or pavement of any railroad station, or public corridor, or different public locations. For any violation of this part the offender shall be fined not lower than $1.00 or greater than $5.00 for every offense.”

(Expectorate – such an amazing SAT phrase!)

Carcasses of Useless Animals and Different Offensive Issues — “If any individual shall place, or trigger to be positioned, in or on any road, alley, sidewalk, lot or elsewhere throughout the metropolis limits, the carcasses of any animal or some other factor or matter offensive to the general public or liable to turn into a nuisance, he shall be fined not lower than $5.00.”

Cease and Waste Cocks — Not a really attention-grabbing part within the least, I simply laughed like a teenage boy once I noticed “cocks” in there 😂😂 Although I did must Google what the heck it was, and discovered its mainly a type of valve used to manage the stream of a liquid or gasoline. Right here’s an instance of 1:

stop and waste cock

Driving Over a Fireplace Hose –“It shall be illegal to drive any car over any hearth hose or chemical hose that could be strung or laid by the hearth division of the town, throughout the police jurisdiction of the town. Anybody violating this part shall be fined not lower than $5.00 nor greater than $10.00 for every offense.”

Parking Meters — “When any car shall be parked in any parking meter zone the proprietor or operator of mentioned car shall upon getting into the parking house, instantly deposit a one cent coin or a 5 cent coin of the USA within the parking meter adjoining to such zone and the mentioned zone might then be utilized by such car for the time period as proven by the parking meter.”

High quality for overstaying: $1.00 if paid inside 48 hours, $2.00-$50.00 if paid after 48 hours.

(Love that they particularly say “United States” coin right here too, lol… I suppose that they had issues with individuals attempting to hack it with pesos or different overseas specimens?! One cent obtained you 12 minutes of parking, btw, and 5 cents obtained you 60.)

Driving Underneath Affect of Intoxicants or Medication — “It shall be illegal for any individual to drive or function any vehicle or different car, automotive, truck, engine, or practice on this metropolis, whereas drunk, brandy, rum, whiskey, gin, wine, beer, lager beer, ale, porter, stout, or some other liquid, beverage or article containing alcohol or whereas below the affect of any narcotic drug, or some other self-administered intoxicant or drug, of in any respect nature.

Any one that violates any provisions of part certainly one of this chapter shall be responsible of  misdemeanor, punishable by a superb of not lower than 100 {dollars} nor greater than one thousand {dollars}, or imprisonment for not lower than one month, nor greater than six months, both or each within the discretion of the court docket or jury attempting identical, for a primary offense, and the court docket might, in its discretion, droop the sentence in the course of the good conduct of the individual convicted.”

Water, Gasoline and Sewer — Town charged a flat $6.00 a 12 months for water hookup, after which extra charges “per tub and water closet and cooled refrigerating machine with one half horsepower” Haha… They didn’t do metering a lot again then, apart from these suspected of benefiting from the water provide (although apparently you possibly can manually request to have a meter put by which the town would do in your behalf).

Much like water hookup, gasoline was additionally charged a flat price monthly relying on the cubic ft of your private home. For the primary 500 cubic ft it prices $0.75, for the following 2,500 – $1.30, and for the following 7,000 – $1.10 (after which continued to go down from there for every extra 1,000 cubic ft). Of curiosity is that additionally they charged for “gasoline operated fridges”?! Can’t say I’ve ever recognized that was a factor!

As for sewer, that service was a flat $2.00 per 12 months per constructing.

Injuring or Failing to Return Books — “Any one that shall willfully injure any e book belonging to such library, or shall willfully fail to return any e book belonging to such library, shall be fined not lower than one nor greater than twenty-five {dollars}, or shall be dedicated to jail, in default of cost of mentioned superb, for not lower than one, nor greater than twenty-five days.”

(You possibly can have gone to jail for not returning your books!!! They did NOT fiddle again then!! $1-$25 was $21.00- $525.00 in as we speak’s {dollars} too, fairly excessive…)

Process for Erection — (😂😂😂) “In each case by which the proprietor of an improved lot within the metropolis shall be desirous of getting a brand new fence erected between his mentioned lot and any improved lot adjoining thereto, and the proprietor of the mentioned adjoining improved lot shall not conform to pay his share of erecting such fence, the foremost shall, on utility of the social gathering wishing to have a brand new fence put up, appoint three discreet freeholders of the town to view the premises, and below their palms to say whether or not a brand new fence to divide the a number of such events is important or not, and the choice of mentioned freeholders, or a majority of them, shall be binding on the events. And the social gathering desirous of getting the brand new fence put up might proceed to have it erected, and on the completion thereof, shall recuperate by warrant, from the proprietor of the adjoining lot, one-half of the price of such fence, with the price of such continuing: Supplied, that the price of mentioned fence be estimated as a fence shaped of fine posts and rails, with undressed paling, and never exceeding six ft excessive.”

(So mainly, in case your neighbor wished to construct a fence you had been on the hook for paying half of it! Which I suppose kinda is sensible since you’d additionally profit from it, however nonetheless…)

Road Walkers — “Road walkers shall be fined not lower than 5 {dollars} not more than twenty-five {dollars}, or imprisoned in jail not exceeding thirty days, or each within the discretion of the police justice.”

Solicitation for Immoral Functions — “Whoever shall invite or entice any individual or individuals upon any avenue, road, street, freeway, alley, open house, public sq., or enclosure to accompany, go together with, or comply with her or him to anywhere for immoral functions, or who shall invite or entice any individual from any door, window, porch, or portico of any home or constructing, to enter any home or go together with, accompany, or comply with her or him to anywhere in any respect for immoral goal shall be punished by a superb of not lower than ten {dollars} and less than 5 hundred {dollars}, or by imprisonment for no more than one 12 months, or by each such superb and imprisonment.”

(I want they might have spelled out what different issues they meant by “immoral functions!” The part solely particularly known as out prostitution…)

Adultery and Fornication — “If any individual commit adultery or fornication he shall be punished by a superb of not lower than ten {dollars} nor greater than 5 hundred {dollars}, or by imprisonment for no more than one 12 months, or by each such superb and imprisonment.”

(There could be fairly the variety of fines and jail time if this had been nonetheless round as we speak!)

Indecent or Insulting Language — “Any individual convicted of using indecent or insulting language to a different individual, or of constructing any indecent, insulting, or immoral proposal to any feminine shall be punished by a superb of not lower than 5 {dollars}, or imprisonment within the metropolis jail not lower than ten days, or by each such superb and imprisonment.”

(Additionally: rap music wouldn’t exist 😎)

Sunday Labor – “If any individual on a Sunday be discovered laboring at any commerce or calling, or make use of his brokers, apprentices or servants in labor or some other enterprise, besides in family, or different work of necessity or charity, or in these companies enumerated within the subsequent following part hereof, or if any individual carry into or carry about this metropolis on a Sunday, any fowls, chickens, eggs, fruit, greens, meat, or some other factor no matter, on the market or barter, such individual shall pay a superb of not lower than two nor greater than ten {dollars}.”

(Fairly wild – nobody was allowed to work!)

Opening Locations of Enterprise on Sunday — “If any individual, not being a druggist or working a diary, confectionery, inn, restaurant, lodge, information company, filling station, storage or restore storage, or ice plant shall maintain his or her retailer, store or place of job open on Sunday, at any time of the day, such individual shall forfeit and pay 5 {dollars} for each offense.”

(Chick-fil-A is the one firm I do know of lately that intentionally chooses to be shut down on Sundays… Gotta love the explanation behind it too: to let workers relaxation “and worship” in the event that they select.)

Furnishing Cigarettes or Weapons to Infants Underneath 16 Years of Age — “If any individual promote, barter, give or furnish, or trigger to be offered, bartered, given or furnished to any minor below sixteen years of age, cigarettes or tobacco in any type, or pistols, or dirks, or bowie-knives, mentioned individual shall be fined not lower than 5 {dollars}.”

(Needed to search for what a “dirk” was – “a brief dagger of a form previously carried by Scottish Highlanders.” Additionally, Dirk Nowitzki’s first identify :))

Disturbing Non secular Conferences – “Any one that shall willfully disturb any meeting of individuals met for the worship of God, whether or not he be in or outdoors of mentioned meeting, shall be fined for each such offense not lower than 5 {dollars} nor greater than twenty-five {dollars}, or confined in jail not lower than 5 nor greater than thirty days, or each within the discretion of the police justice.”

Dancing — “It shall not be lawful for any individual to advertise, help or interact in dancing in any public or non-public room or corridor within the metropolis between the hours of two A.M. and eight A.M. on weekdays, or between midnight on Saturday to midnight on Sunday. Any individual violating this part shall be deemed responsible of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a superb of not lower than $25.00 not more than $200.00.”

(It’s Footloose up in right here earlier than Footloose was even a factor!)

Desecration of Flag — “It shall be a misdemeanor for any individual throughout the mentioned metropolis to willfully desecrate in any method of the flag of the Commonwealth of Virginia or that of the USA of America, or for any individual, aside from the proprietor, his brokers, servants, and workers, with out the consent of mentioned proprietor, to take away from buildings mentioned flags in mentioned metropolis or from any road or public place in mentioned metropolis the place mentioned flags could also be positioned, or to mutilate or destroy mentioned flags. Any individual responsible of violating the provisions of this part or any of them shall be fined not lower than $5.00 nor greater than $100.00 or confined in jail not lower than 5 nor greater than thirty days, or could also be each fined and imprisoned.”

Horses To not Be Pushed Over Six Miles an Hour When Hooked up to Drays and Carts — “No individual shall drive any horse or horses, when hooked up to any dray, cart or wagon, throughout the limits of this metropolis, quicker than six miles an hour. Each individual violating this part shall forfeit and pay two {dollars} for each offense.”

Fruit-skins on Sidewalks and Flooring of Public Halls — “It shall be illegal for any individual to throw fruit-skins or peelings on the sidewalks, or flooring of public halls. Any violation of this part shall topic the offender to a superb of not lower than two nor greater than 5 {dollars}.”

(Weirdly I’ve seen individuals do that within the streets in trendy days… I’m guessing they really feel it’s okay as a result of it’ll naturally disintegrate, however each time I see it I all the time brace for somebody to cartoon-slip and fall on their ass due to it, haha…)


However there you’ve got it…

Legal guidelines of yore that will help you for when Jeopardy begins again up once more 🙂

TL;DR: Dancing, fornicating, furnishing cigarettes or weapons to infants, laboring on Sunday, inquiring for immoral functions, throwing fruit-skins on the ground, injuring or not returning library books, inserting carcasses of useless animals on the street, indecent language, driving over a hearth hose, expectorating on the sidewalk, and never reporting venereal illnesses can all trigger you hefty fines and/or jail time.

Completely different occasions, completely different fines!

j. money signature

PS: for extra enjoyable time touring…

Picture cred: Unseen Histories

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