Tonight before we go to bed, I’ll set all our clocks an hour ahead so when we awake tomorrow, we won’t be late for whatever we decided to do. This twice-yearly time change thing is sort of nuts now. It’s too bad we can’t settle on a time and then stick with it. But at least it’s not as bad as it was in the 1920s and 1930s. Back then, it was pretty much every area for itself when it came to what time it was.
As the Kendall County Record reported on April 9, 1930:
Chicago daylight saving time, the bane of hundreds of commuters residing in the Fox valley cities, will be ushered in Sunday, April 27, the last Sunday of the month. The extra hour of sunshine will remain until the last Sunday in September when the clocks, by Chicago ordinance, will be set back to central standard time. Suburban trains and the third rail lines operate on the daylight schedule while through trains are operated on central time.
So why not just vote on it? Okay, on April 14, 1937, the Record reported from Oswego that:
At the village election to be held next Tuesday, April 20, the question of whether or not to have daylight saving time in the village of Oswego will be voted on.
The result of which was:
The vote for daylight savings time in Oswego carried at the town election on Tuesday, April 20. All meetings of the churches and schools will be on the fast time. The Presbyterian prayer meeting on each Tuesday night will begin at 8:30.
And so the confusion continued; some communities had Daylight Saving Time, some didn’t. Until World War II solved the problem–much like World War I had done before it–by mandating nationwide time standards, something we take pretty much for granted these days. ‘Twasn’t always so, though…