In 1949, the United States economy was coming out of a recession. It was not a very good time to find a job. The recession was not as bad as some economic prognosticators thought it might have been, but living through it still was not a particularly ideal era.
All in all, however, the postwar economy of the United States was strong. Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal and the involvement in World War 2 proved major boons to the nation. As the Cold War escalated, America was producing more and more, and so the economy continued to grow. It must have been a stark contrast to the pre-war era of the Great Depression that caused so much unhappiness and strife for the American people and around the world.
Unemployment during the recession of 1949 hit a high of just below eight percent, and the recession lasted in total for about eleven months. In the grand scheme of American history, it was not a particularly seismic economic event. However, just because something is not important on a global or national scale does not mean that real people are not affected.