‘Some One Dreamed the Other Night That He Was Living in the Year 2023 … Eggs Had Gone Up to $10 a Dozen’

In late January 2023, an Imgur account shared an image of a newspaper clipping which contained an apparent lament about the future cost of eggs a century from 1923:

The post was titled “Nostradamus, is that you in 1923?” The text shown on the clipping read:

Fact Check

Claim: A newspaper clipping from 1923 about how “someone dreamed the other night that he was living in the year 2023,” and “eggs had gone up to a dozen” is genuine.

Description: The clipping, found in the October 19 1923 edition of Colorado’s Delta Independent newspaper, mentions a dream someone had of living in the year 2023, wherein the price of eggs had risen to a dozen. The Imgur post claims that the figure has turned out to be true.


Rating Explanation: According to the current price of eggs and the inflation rate from 1923 to 2023, the price charged for a dozen eggs in 2023 is still lower than the mentioned in the newspaper clipping from 1923. Thus, the prediction has not been fulfilled, though the price of eggs has increased significantly.

… it merely by talking as if they thought everyone was deaf.

Some one dreamed the other night that he was living in the year 2023, and people were going on strike because they only got $125 a day, while the price of eggs had gone up to $10 a dozen.

Labor organizing is on the upswing in 2023, with union support and striking activity higher than it has been in decades:

A Gallup poll published in August [2022] found that 71% of Americans approve of labor unions, the highest point since 1965 and up from a nadir of 48% approval in 2010.

“The low unemployment rate that developed during the pandemic altered the balance of power between employers and employees, creating an environment fostering union membership that has resulted in the formation of unions at several high-profile companies,” Gallup wrote in its analysis of the poll.

However, minimum wage workers still make less than $125 a day, except in Washington, DC, where as of July 2022 they stand to make $16.10 an hour, or $128 a day.

Of course, the specific mention of “eggs” stood out in terms of relevance. Throughout January 2023 egg prices remained a topic of frequent focus and discussion, and on January 12 2023, NBC News reported:

The national average price for a dozen eggs hit $3.59 in November [2022], up from $1.72 a year earlier, according to the latest government data. That’s putting stress on consumer budgets and the bottom lines of restaurants, bakeries and other food producers that rely heavily on eggs … But egg prices are up significantly more than other foods — even more than chicken or turkey — because egg farmers were hit harder by the bird flu. More than 43 million of the 58 million birds slaughtered over the past year [2021] to control the virus have been egg-laying chickens, including some farms with more than a million birds apiece in major egg-producing states like Iowa.

Five days later, CBS News published “Egg prices have soared 60% in a year. Here’s why,” quoting a New York grocery store owner as saying egg prices “quadrupled in about six or seven months” as of January 2023. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a weekly “Egg Markets Overview” on January 27 2023 [PDF], and made mention of prices per dozen exceeding $5 in some instances:

The California benchmark for Large shell eggs decreased $0.35 to $5.62 per dozen with a weak undertone. Delivered prices on the California-compliant wholesale loose egg market increased $0.11 per dozen to $5.13 per dozen with a steady undertone.

On January 12 2023, BoingBoing.net alluded to even higher prices in California:

Bad news for Californians who like eggs cooked on a gas range — the price of both has skyrocketed recently. The USDA reports that a dozen eggs in the Golden State average $7.37, which is more than triple the $2.35 average price from a year ago.

Neither higher figure ($5.62 or $7.37) could be rounded to $10. As for the price of eggs in 1923 for comparison, a chart on page 233 of the United States Census’ 1976 Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970 provided prices of standard goods across decades in the United States.

The data originated with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and placed the price of a dozen eggs in 1923 at 49 cents a dozen. According to BLS.gov’s “Inflation Calculator,” 49 cents in 1923 was equivalent to $8.66 in December 2022, and $10 in 1923 roughly equaled $176.66 in 2023.

In that context, 1923 eggs were perhaps closer to $10 a dozen than 2023 eggs:

egg prices 1923

Regarding the newspaper clipping, the submitter linked to a source at the bottom of the page. On the Library of Congress newspaper archive, “Chronicling America,” the excerpt was available in its broader context.

The clipping appeared on page eight of the October 19 1923 edition of Colorado’s Delta Independent. A section titled “Community Room Notes” addressed a dance, a rummage sale, and a Halloween party before moving on to a series of seemingly unconnected observations:

There may be an overstock of some commodities, but the American people will consume about all the bunk that is produced.

Many people who are trying to acquire “personality,” but they can’t get it merely by talking as if they thought everyone was deaf.

Some one dreamed the other night that he was living in the year 2023, and people were going on strike because they only got $125 a day, while the price of eggs had gone up to $10 a dozen.

A January 2023 Imgur post purported to depict a newspaper clipping from 1923, mentioning that “some one dreamed the other night” about “living in the year 2023,” “while the price of eggs had gone up to $10 (presumably per dozen, not apiece). The clipping was real and accurately described, and the newspaper section was available via the Library of Congress “Chronicling America” project. Eggs in 1923 appeared to cost just under 50 cents a dozen, or a little under $9 in 2023 dollars.