The Changing Family



1900 - 1920

-Young children worked on farms to earn money for the family.

-Factories and new machinery brought families from the countries into the cities.


1920 - 1940

-Husbands were considered the "breadwinners" of the family and worked while the wives stayed home.


1940 - 1960

-Men returned from WWII and continued to work while the women stayed home and the children attended school.


1960 - 1970

-More women started entering the workforce again.
-Women gained access to legal rights, birth control, and education.
-Divorce rates rose and births to unmarried mothers increased.


1970 - 2000

-Women continually entering the workforce
-More common to see divorced parents, blended families, single-parent families, and Gay and Lesbian marriages.
-Day care centers becoming popular so that men and women with children can work.



Men and women waiting longer to get married
(Averages= Men- 27.5 years old & Women- 25.6 years old)

Parents are having fewer children
(Average household size decreased from 4.60 in 1900 to 2.62 in 2000)

Divorce Rate
(Although the divorce rate is about 50%, it has been slowly decreasing since 2000)

(12% of Americans are currently in their second, third, and fourth marriage)

Specific Events



-Over 2 million children under the age of 15 were employed in the United States. (No child labor laws)

Great Depression

1929 - 1939

-Men lost jobs, families had limited resources.
-Women found jobs to help support the family.

World War II

1939 - 1945

-Men went off to war and the women took their jobs in the factories

Cold War

1947 - 1991

-Booming economy and production

Nuclear Family- consisted of a mother, father, and at least one child.



The birth control pill went on the market. Women now had the option to deter pregnancy if they wished to do so.