The History of Prom: Is It Still Relevant?

The promenade, now referred to as “the prom,” has been a tradition carried out through many high schools since the mid to late eighteen hundreds, as a formal gathering involving dance and socialization. By the 1930s, the prom had become a sine qua non for teenage culture; a quintessential symbol for coming of age.

In the 19th century, prom was more commonly held in American universities i as a ball for the graduating class. It later entered the lives of high schoolers as a “last dance” before parting onto their adult lives, and a time to say their goodbyes to the peers they had studied with for so long. Prom also began being held in more luxurious places like resorts or clubs instead of school gymnasiums, creating a slightly higher prom budget norm.

The increasing average amount of money being spent on prom does not stop there either. Unlike budgets of the previous attenders in the early 1960s, the commonality of expensive dresses or tuxedos being bought, fancy limousines to arrive in, accessories that shine brighter than the milky way, and the professional photographs that many people feel are essential in order to have the dream prom experience all contribute to the modernized idea of what prom entails.

“Prom dresses have become more intricate, thus raising the price, to crazy amounts such as 1,822 dollars,” The Odyssey Online said.

In earlier times, prom was anything but credit-inducing. During the 20th century, prom often consisted of a nice gown, a corsage, a nice picture that the parents of the two lovers demanded be taken, and a small amount of money for food afterwards. The budget for this special occasion has rose a substantial amount in recent times, leaving some feeling overwhelmed, discouraged, and just plain confused about the significance of prom.

“In 2015,” The Odyssey said, “the average price of prom increased to about $1,393.”


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