25 Things a Quarter Could Buy in the 1950s. Prices go up and go down, it’s just the way it’s always been. As technology improves, new items hit the market, and trends change, the market adjusts accordingly. Sometimes a price change is drastic and sudden, like the cost of a cell phone or college education, and other times it’s slow and almost unnoticeable, like how much a gallon of milk is worth.
Supply and demand account for a lot of these price changes. At higher prices, buyers demand less of that product while sellers will provide more of it to maximize profit. These two factors interact to determine what the market price and volume of goods are that are available. However, this isn’t always the reason for fluctuation in cost.
Inflation is also a big reason the value set on product changes. It’s a general increase in prices and fall in the purchasing value of money, which is why milk cost 82 cents in 1950 and can cost around $4 today. It’s crazy to think about how much everything can change in a short amount of time.
Have you noticed that $5 footlongs and $5 "Hot and Ready" pizzas are disappearing? They’re not even marketed the same way because of the price increases on the food items. We'll all be recounting this moment in disbelief to future generations, but for now, let's take a look back to an even simpler time. Here is a list of things that would cost you only a quarter in the 1950s.