The Gilded Age saw the United States shift from an agricultural to an urban, industrial society, as people flocked to big cities during the 1890s. Many young people left the countryside for the cities. These cities were at the height of modernization at the time, with skyscrapers, electric trolleys, department stores, bridges, bicycles, indoor plumbing, telephones, and electric lamps. Thus, Industrialization and the rush to the cities led to the development of consumerism and a middle class.
During the Gilded Age, consumerism was improving and increasing all over America. Consumerism, an idea that involves the desire to purchase goods and services in ever-greater amounts, was especially important in the connection with the woman and the home. Women's home making became one of the most important yardsticks for measuring levels of consumer prosperity. The home was the showplace of the individual family's membership in good standing in the consumer society, as manifested by home improvements and conveniences, home furnishing, and home decoration. The supposed goal of instituting efficiency science in the home was to help women cut down on the amount of time spent in housework. Laborsaving household devices and appliances, such as vacuum cleaners, were extraordinarily popular. Radios, too, were part of the consumerism-and-the-home worldview; they were purchased for their ability to help women pass the time doing housework with less sense of monotony.
So, in relation to Winter Park, the home as a consumptive structure was very important. Winter Park is a very wealthy community so it is clear to see how consumption shapes the perception of the home. Many people in this area purchase extravagant items and tend to live in neighborhoods where people own things just like them. When tourists pass by and see all the Hummers and Cadillacs, the humongous and gorgeous houses, and the name brand clothing worn by natives, the tourists get a sense of inferiority.
In conclusion, the Gilded Age saw the United States shift from an agricultural society, to an urban, industrial one. Industrialization and the rush to the cities led to the development of consumerism and a middle class, which in turn, had a strong connection with the woman and the home. With this consumerism epidemic occurring all over America, it is easy to guess that the same thing was happening in Winter Park. Winter Park is a very wealthy community and many pricey items are present. It creates a different atmosphere and reflects how consumerism was during the Gilded Age.