ThePeopleHistory.com, InflationData.com and Money.CNN.com are three websites that show how the prices of consumer goods and services have changed over time. ThePeopleHistory.com and InflationData.com list past and current prices of common expenses, such as food, transportation and housing. They also compare how wages have changed over time.
InflationData.com compares both historical and relatively current food prices, using the years 1913 and 2013 as reference points. MyBudget360.com has a table comparing common purchase prices in 1938 and 2013. The table lists average prices of rent, gasoline, a new car, college tuition and postage stamps, as well as average annual incomes.
Money.CNN.com has an online calculator that gives a more general idea of inflation. Type in the amount of money spent on a purchase today, select a year in the past, and the calculator displays the past price of the item.
For a broader overview of changing prices and financial values over time, MeasuringWorth.com has a collection of data sets available. These data sets list changing values of both American and foreign currency, changes in the Consumer Price Index, the price of gold, and stock growth rates. Also listed are comparisons of wages, savings rates, growth rates and purchasing power. The site provides definitions and instructions for interpreting the data as well.