The 1800's were the century in which the Industrial Revolution moved from a dawn of possibility to a day of opportunity. As it came to a close, monarchies stood on the brink, Luddites were busy smashing up motorized plows, and liberal movements like women's suffrage were born alongside evil ones such as fascism. Queen Victoria's reign was ending, and the British Empire was at the height of its power.
Railways snaked across the world as steamships displaced sails and electricity began to threaten the hegemony of gas lights. Robber Barons were already making fortunes in coal, steel, and oil, as the great energy companies of the next 100 years were born: Shell, British Petroleum, Chevron, and more. Meanwhile, the Wright brothers eyed the skies, as the Lumiere brothers lit up the first silver screen, and a little boy named Walt was born to the Disney family. Around 40% of the population worked on the land and a further 30% in service. Civil rights were a twinkle in the distance. Very few people could have known that the horrors of World War One were only just around the corner.
It was a time of increasingly rapid change. For some, that was disorientating and upsetting, as the Romantic ideal of a bucolic, natural world gave way to the bright lights of modernity. For others, it was an opportunity to make out like a bandit. Most were somewhere in the middle. Take this quiz to find out where you would have landed amid one of the most exciting periods in human history!
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