11/19/2010 05:12 am ET Updated 4 days ago

The History Of What Things Cost In America From 1776 To Today: 24/7 Wall Street

The value of coffee has increased fifteen times from its price 234 years ago. This is a similar increase to the value of the dollar, based on the purchasing power of a dollar and the consumer price index.

The value of land has risen a great deal in certain parts of the country -- particularly those areas that were rural and now are parts of big cities. It was impossible to know 150 years ago that land in New York's Central Park would be worth several thousand times what it was in 1776. Conversely, products like whale oil, once used to light homes, now have no legal value at all. Powdered wigs have almost certainly dropped in value now that they are out of fashion.

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