America didn't always have a middle class.
In the late 1700s and early 1800s, the foundling nation had wealthy landowners, but everyone else was pretty close together, both physically and economically, said historian Stuart Blumin.
A retired history professor at Cornell University and author of the 1989 book "The Emergence of the Middle Class," Blumin said the more egalitarian society of the nation's first 50 years had a lot to do with how goods were created.
Most products were made by artisans who often had apprentices living in their households and who lived near their wealthier customers.
America's middle class has relatively brief history | The Republic