Grocery Prices of the Past

These 1940’s grocery prices are from the website.

It won’t be easy matching the prices in the above ad. Try finding coffee for 19 cents a pound today or two boxes of Wheaties for the same 19 cents.





A Chicago restaurant featured a deluxe Thanksgiving dinner for a $1.


If you’ve priced Thanksgiving dinners lately you will know the above ad offered a real bargain compared to the prices being charged today for Thanksgiving dinners.

The dinner included roast young Vermont turkey, cranberry sauce and all the trimmings. Try finding this deal at your nearest Holiday Inn restaurant this next Thanksgiving or your nearest Krogers grocery store.




These prices are from a 1930’s grocery ad.


Back in the 1930’s you could purchase ten pounds of sugar for only 47 cents and a quart jar of mustard for 15 cents.

In addition buyers back then had their choice of two pounds of lard or a can of peaches for 15 cents.





Author: Andrew Godfrey

Retired from newspaper work after 38 years. Had served in the Army in Hawaii and Vietnam in the 60's. Am now retired and living in Sulphur, Louisiana.

11 thoughts on “Grocery Prices of the Past”

  1. I love looking at ads of the past. Even without looking at the prices, there’s something about the fonts, the pictures and the layout that just strikes you of yesteryear…

    1. Having worked in newspapers back in the days of those ads from 1966 I can remember placing these ads in the page forms many times over the years.

      Nowadays grocery ads are preprinted in faraway cities so the major chains have no reason to publish an ad except in the form of preprinted grocery sections.

  2. Those prices look good, but remember you were only making maybe 50 cents an hour then. My first “real” job in 1958 paid $1.10 an hour.

  3. I worked in the Steel Mill in Youngstown,Ohio in 1948 made $1.71 per hour that was union wages $136.80 every two weeks B-4 taxesthat is $1641.60 a year.My first job in 1943 was .20 cents an hour I was 13.

    1. I was paid $1.40 an hour in 1966 in my first job. You were making 31 cents more an hour than me in 1948, so were way ahead of me. That shows it pays to be in an union. Our CEO didn’t like unions, so when there was talk of one once, he completely freaked out.

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