one-fifty an acre

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Tea Addict

Senior Member
Republic of Korea Korean
Hello everyone. I would like to know what "one-fifty an acre" means in the following sentences:

“Gopher Prairie is going to have a great future. Some of the best dairy and wheat land in the state right near there—some of it selling right now at one-fifty an acre, and I bet it will go up to two and a quarter in ten years!”
“Is——Do you like your profession?”
“Nothing like it."

- Sinclair Lewis, Main Street, Chapter 2

Carol and Kennicott met each other in a party. Then Kennicott began to tell her about his hometown, Gopher Prairie. He said that there was some of the best dairy and wheat land in the state, some of which was selling at "one-fifty an acre."

In this part, I could not grasp whether "one-fifty" means one dollar and fifty cents, or one hundred and fifty dollars, or some other number that I couldn't guess.
As a language learner, numbers without definite determiners--dollars, meters, and so on--always make me so difficult to understand the text.
In this context, how much do you think it is?

I would very much appreciate your help. :)
 
  • JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    Hello everyone. I would like to know what "one-fifty an acre" means in the following sentences:

    “Gopher Prairie is going to have a great future. Some of the best dairy and wheat land in the state right near there—some of it selling right now at one-fifty an acre, and I bet it will go up to two and a quarter in ten years!”
    “Is——Do you like your profession?”
    “Nothing like it."

    - Sinclair Lewis, Main Street, Chapter 2

    Carol and Kennicott met each other in a party. Then Kennicott began to tell her about his hometown, Gopher Prairie. He said that there was some of the best dairy and wheat land in the state, some of which was selling at "one-fifty an acre."

    In this part, I could not grasp whether "one-fifty" means one dollar and fifty cents, or one hundred and fifty dollars, or some other number that I couldn't guess.
    As a language learner, numbers without definite determiners--dollars, meters, and so on--always make me so difficult to understand the text.
    In this context, how much do you think it is?

    I would very much appreciate your help. :)
    It's difficult for native speakers too - if one is not familiar with real estate prices a hundred years ago (that includes almost everyone)! Google helped me find this document and it is in line with biblio's suggestion, given that it is good farmland and not desert :d
     

    Tea Addict

    Senior Member
    Republic of Korea Korean
    Dear bibliolept and JulianStuart,

    Thank you so much for the explanations, and for searching the real estate prices back then.
    So given that the average value of farmland was 69 dollars in 1920, 150 dollars for a good farmland in this context would make sense.
    I sincerely appreciate your help. :)
     
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