What would you do with your life if you were born in the same place as in real life, but 100 years earlier?


Ad Honoris
May 2014
Do You think It is a real difference between 0,1% or 98% death toll when You are part of those percentages?

Maybe You noticed that when it comes to a couple of things I have a big mouth. 100 years ago, I think that in a lot of places in Europe, not just in Belgium, that could have been slightly problematic.
Yeah, sometimes being frank about various things even today could result in one getting into trouble. :( For instance, look at the treatment that people such as Arthur Jensen got for their research. Granted, this is different from what was happening in WWI, but my point here is that speaking out in a way that makes the people at the top uncomfortable could result in one getting into serious trouble--albeit to a greater extent in Belgium during WWI in comparison to the US in the post-WWII decades.


Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
the dead Belgians often were not random casualties but civilians taken and put in front of a firing squad
this as a peace keeping measure , pure terror
German did it in WW1 , WW2 up to the very end
that wasn't Nazi , that was good old German militarism .....bastards !

deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
Yeah, sometimes being frank about various things even today could result in one getting into trouble. :( For instance, look at the treatment that people such as Arthur Jensen got for their research
I have the impression You don't realize 100 years ago was 1919. Stop a bit and look around Europe on what was happening at the time.
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist
May 2019
Probably the same as my ancestors back then; shipped out on the Pacific, spent my young adulthood breaking my back on a rusty freighter or a whaler, then slipped into a shoreside job in some port city before I got too old, with fond memories of my globetrotting adventures...

Or I might have succumbed to a tropical disease or drowned in a typhoon. All part of the life :p
Last edited:


Ad Honoris
May 2014
Growing up a poor brown boy in East London, 1888.

Probably work at the dockyards until I get killed in the First World War.
So, you'd have been born around the Jack the Ripper scare--which occurred in Whitechapel nearby. As for WWI, yeah, it would certainly be a huge shame for you to have lost your life in that war. You could have emigrated to the US beforehand, but even so, the US also entered WWI--while also suffering a lot less deaths as a result of this war, of course. Even if you'd have survived WWI, though, there was a chance that you'd have gotten killed by disease in the 1919 Spanish flu.

BTW, a brown person in London in 1888 would have been rather exotic, no? No offense, but I don't think that there were actually very many brown people (I'm presuming you mean South Asians here) in London back in 1888.


Ad Honorem
Aug 2015
Chalfont, Pennsylvania
I would've been born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1837. Since most of my ancestors had not yet migrated to the USA from Norway, Germany and Austria, that would've been impossible. But anyway, if I were born then and there, I would've been vulnerable to be drafted into the army and be killed in the Civil War. I like to think, in that case, I would've had enough sense to flee to Canada, or maybe head west to get out of that situation, ha ha.
You are worried about something statistically improbable.

Your probability of being drafted into the Union army would be rather small. Only a minority of men of military age served in the Union army. The majority of men of military age were needed to work in farms and factories, etc.

The United States first employed national conscription during the American Civil War. The vast majority of troops were volunteers; of the 2,100,000 Union soldiers, about 2% were draftees, and another 6% were substitutes paid by draftees.[8][9]
Conscription in the United States - Wikipedia

So your overall probability of being drafted into the Union army would be low.

The Rebels conscripted a larger proportion of their army, but never had control in Maryland so all the Rebel soldiers from Maryland were volunteers, who often had to avoid the law and sneak into Rebel controlled territory to enlist.

So if you didn't want to fight in the war your chances of being drafted would be slight. Furthermore, only a minority of soldiers, about one fifth, died during the war, and m the majority of them died of disease instead of battle wounds.

Therefore, your overall probability of being drafted into he army and killed in the Civil War would have been quite low.
  • Like
Reactions: Futurist


Ad Honorem
Aug 2013
What would you do with your life if you were born in the same place as in real life, but 100 years earlier? As for me, that would have meant being born in Ottoman Palestine in 1892. In such a scenario, I would have probably sought to emigrate to the US once I would have become an adult--preferably before the start of World War I. (The US was already a very attractive destination for immigrants even in the pre-WWI era--including for a lot of Jews and for some immigrants from the Ottoman Empire.) In the US, I would probably be attracted to moderate socialist movements such as that of Eugene V. Debs while vehemently disliking Communists due to their desire to install totalitarian, one-party states wherever they will actually gain power. In the two-party US political system, I would probably support the Democrats--especially after FDR would have rose to prominence. So, I'd have probably been a liberal New Dealer with a bit of a socialist flavor in this scenario. I might have become some kind of political activist and tried to make a career out of this, but I'm unsure whether or not I would have actually succeeded in regards to this. Of course, I could have also been drafted by the US military in WWI in this scenario and forced to fight on the Western Front--though if I would have survived this, I would have likely already been too old to fight in WWII. In the post-WWII years and decades, I would have probably become a liberal anti-Communist in the mold of Henry "Scoop" Jackson--a US Senator from Washington who supported things such as the New Deal but was also vehemently anti-Communist. I doubt that I would have actually lived to see the end of the Cold War in this scenario since I would have been 99 years old by that point in time and I certainly don't see myself actually living that long. So, yeah, I'd almost certainly never actually live to see the people of Eastern Europe and the USSR actually get their freedom in this scenario. :(

Anyway, what would your life have been like if you were born in the same place as in real life, but 100 years earlier?
I would have been born in the mid to late 1800s in the North of England and been a mill worker or even a colliery labourer (but being female, working above ground thanks to the Mines Acts brought in before my birth). I would have started work at 10 years old, possibly younger, full time. Married at age about 25. Lived in a small terraced house, maybe a 'back to back' house. I would have not have been educated by the state, as I would have just missed the Education Acts? So might have been iilliterate. Might possibly have been a Methodist or other Nonconformist denomination. Lived on a diet of moslty bread, potatoes, corned beef and low grade tea. Would have drank stout or pale ale in the evening at home, while my husband was in the pub.

By 1919, like so many others, I would still be mourning the loss of relatives from WW1. I would probably be involved in some kind of trade union activity or supporting family involved in it. Either still working myself or helping my family by looking after Grandchildren while both parents worked.
  • Like
Reactions: Isleifson
Dec 2019
Los Angeles
Interesting question. I was born in Texas, which 100 years ago (before the tech and music industry) demanded real honest to god cowboy strength and I don't think I'd be any more cut out for that life than I am now. Going by 100 years before I was born rather than 2019, it would be the late 1800s and I'd really be screwed. So I don't know, just survive until manhood then move to New York City or something.