Social Security stands today as one of the “three legs” of retirement, along with private pensions and savings. However, the US was fairly late to the party when it comes to old-age and disability insurance. The first system put in place for this came from Otto von Bismarck in Prussia, along with a universal health insurance system. (Yes, that Otto von Bismarck, Mr. “Blood and Iron.”)
Four more bits of trivia on Social Security after the jump!
- While the recipient of the first Social Security card is unfortunately unknown (thus propagating the, “Yo mama’s so old, her Social Security number is 1”, joke), the first recipient of a Social Security check was Ernest Ackerman, who retired one day before Social Security was implemented and received a whopping 17 cents.
- Vermonter Ida May Fuller was the first woman to receive monthly payments – she lived to be 100 and earned over $22,000 – good money back then – in Social Security payments over time!
- The idea for Social Security in the States came from a woman, Frances Perkins – who would later be named to the Cabinet as Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare.
- Finally, you know that LifeLock guy who publishes his Social Security number for all to see? He’s gotten his identity stolen – 13 times.