Visitor looking at Campbell´s Soup cans by Andy Warhol, Museum of Modern Art, New York City
age fotostock—Alamy

Every year around this time, Money takes stock of the economy and tries to answer the question: What's the best thing to do with $1,000 right now? Researching this year's ways to put a grand to work (or play) got us thinking about the power of $1,000 in years past. In most cases, that amount money doesn't go as far as it used to—you can't buy a new car with it, for example, or live abroad on it for a year (more on that below.) But in other areas, like technology, its purchasing power has exploded.

So in the runup to this year's suggestions for what to do with $1,000 (coming to on September 21), here's a look back at 10 things that used to cost a stack, and what the equivalent items cost today.