The First World War had a tremendous impact on the entire western world. The rationing of all goods that could be used for military purposes, as well as the drafting of huge numbers of men into the war effort, drastically altered the way of life. Women were called upon to replace men in the factories, giving them their own money for the first time. After the war, women could not be persuaded to go back to their old status, and soon gained the vote in most Western countries.

The twenties sees an explosion of optimism. World War I was over, the factories were full, and the stock market was climbing. People had money to spend on leisure items. Automobiles made it possible for people to take trips across the country.

The crash of the stock market in 1929 leads us into the next period, and ends the carefree age of the roaring twenties.