Excuse Me…What Time Is It?
We all gripe about the clock…standard time, saving time, falling back or springing forward. But I want to know - who decided “what” time it is?
You see, before 1900, especially in the “wild west,” no one really knew what time it was.
Time was determined by the city clock tower or the local jeweler who had a fancy clock in his store or by city leaders who got together and set their pocket watches. For the average person, they didn’t care! The got up with the sun and worked till it went down.
Well, as it turns out, it was the railroads that “officially” set “American Standard Time” in 1883. The new standard time system was not immediately embraced by all. Many towns wanted to stay with their old practices when it came to telling time. That made it difficult for the railroad to keep a schedule. So the government got involved March 19, 1918, making Standard Time and time zones law with the Standard Time Act of 1918, also known as the Calder Act. The act also established daylight saving time.
Daylight saving time was repealed in 1919, thought by the public to be a dumb idea, but it was brought back in World War II as a way to save energy for the war effort and never went away.
So, as we fall back this weekend, blame farmers, blame schools, blame whoever you want…but why not go ahead and blame “politicians”…they probably deserve it!
Excuse me…What Time Is It?