1942 Prices for Household Goods & Services

Below are some representative prices of household goods and services listed in Montana newspapers during 1942. Due to wartime shortages and rationing, many goods disappeared from store shelves, and the cost of living accelerated throughout the war years. These prices were taken from ads in various Montana newspapers.

• Milk – $.14 per quart
• Flour – $1.73 for 49 pounds
• Coffee – $.35 per pound
• Eggs – $.30 per dozen
• Hamburger – $.23 per pound
• Steak – as high as $.35 per pound.
• Beef roast – $.27 per pound
• Ham – $.37 per pound
• Campbells tomato soup – 3 cans for $.25
• Peanut butter – 25 ounces for $.37
• Spam – $.39 for a 12 ounce can
• Coffee sold for more than $.25 per pound.
• Soda – six-pack for $.25
• 100 Anacin – $.78
• Carter’s Pills – $.19
• Cigarettes – $.10 per pack of 24
• Beer – $.10 per bottle
• Old Hickory whiskey – $2.35 per quart
• Electric train set – $8.79
• Child’s doll – $2.49
• Scout trainer machine gun toy – $2.49
• Paperback book – $.49
• Hardback book – $2 to $5
• Great Falls Tribune – one year subscription – $20
• First-class letter – $.02 (this increased to $.03 in 1944)
• Men’s suit – $30 to $40
• Men’s sport shirts – $3
• Necktie – $1.00.
• Women’s hat – $3.00
• Stetson hat – $7.50 to $25
• Winchester Model 92 pump shotgun – $56.70
• 12 gauge shotgun shells – 24 for $1.20
• Enamel paint – $1.55 per quart, $2.69 per gallon
• Taxi in Billings , 1 passenger & zone 1 – $.25
• Bus fare – $.10 in Billings, $.07 in Missoula
• Automobile tires – $12 to $22
• Range, coal or wood burning – $79.95.
• Used appliances – $5-$20.
• Electric vacuum $9.95
• Montana driver’s license – $.75per year
• Montana marriage license – $.2.25
• Shave-and-a-haircut – $1.00 – $1.25
• Full course meal at a nice restaurant – $1.00

Read more about Montana During World War II

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