In general, life was looking rosy during the 70s era. It was a decade that started with war but ended with peace.
It was a time when families still gathered together for dinner each night and when new-fangled gadgets made it easier to cook, do homework, or play together.
Fashion took on a whole new look.
People began to care more about their environment and sports figures started making seven-figure salaries.
Music had a new sound and television shows ushered in a whole new era of entertainment. In all, the country flourished, and the times, were a-changin.
70s Life at Home
Home life in the 70s still centered largely around the family. Most kids came home from school, did their homework, ate dinner with their parents, and then watched TV or went out to play.
Record players were used to still spin 45s and 33s, but cassettes and 8-track tapes were popular as well.
Most homes had a colored TV by this point and parents were watching some new and entertaining shows that caused a bit of a stir, including All in the Family and NBC’s Saturday Night.
Atari produced the first video game in 1974. It was an immediate hit, despite what we would now call very primitive graphics.
Technology was also evident at the grocery store where cashiers no longer had to ring up prices but could simply scan a barcode at the check-out stand.
Email also came about during the 70s, but most households wouldn’t see it until much later.
70s life outside the home
In many of America’s homes, Mom was now going out to work. In the 70s, she had more options than ever, no longer limited to being just a teacher or a secretary.
Women began to take their place in the boardroom – albeit slowly – and a wealth of opportunities were opening to them.
On college campuses, co-eds were celebrating the end of the Vietnam War, planting trees to help the environment, and experimenting with new majors like Computer Science.
Families still took long vacations in their station wagons, but commercial air travel was becoming more and more popular.
Mom, Dad, and the kids liked the idea of getting to their desired destination quickly and hurried to make reservations that would take them to places like Florida’s brand new Walt Disney World resort, which opened in 1971.
All in all, life in the 70s was peaceful and calm, especially compared to the turbulent 1960s. American culture flourished and so did Americans in general.
New opportunities were everywhere and were available to more people than ever before. And though every decade has its memorable tragic events, the 70s had fewer than most and – for the most part – happiness and a positive outlook for the future prevailed.