I recently came across this ad, published in 1937 for a 75 cent Hotel Glasser chicken or turkey dinner. Wow that’s cheap! The closest thing you will find at that price today is a McChicken sandwich at McDonalds. It makes me wonder if the proprietors were keeping the prices ultra low so that everybody could afford a meal. After all, this was the middle of the Great Depression.
Well, they may have been doing their best to keep prices low but 75 cents in 1937 certainly wasn’t just pocket change. According to the InflationCalculator over at Dollartimes.com:
$0.75 in 1937 had about the same buying power as $11.57 in 2010. Annual inflation over this period was about 3.82%.
I would say that $11.57 is typical of what you would pay for a chicken dinner at a modern hotel restaurant today. It’s certainly a step above a McChicken sandwich.
I was also curious why the Hotel Glasser, located in Monongahela, would advertise in the Pittsburgh Press. Well, according to an old article I found online, the hotel was known for its good food and was popular with businessmen who would ride the trolley to Monongahela from Pittsburgh.
The Hotel Glasser is better known today as the Marble Hotel. The Marble is vacant and derelict but still standing at 144 West Main Street Monongahela PA. (next to CJ’s Furniture and across the street from the old Rite Aid Building) This hotel is an amazing building but I don’t expect it to be around much longer. I took a few pictures of it last year from a vantage point very few have access to but that will have to wait for another post!