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100 years ago most people that had any semblance of middle class status had live-in servants. Servants got room & board and a pittance for pay and were better off than many many others in a day and age without entitlements or safety nets. Also, 100 years ago, anyone with a room to spare took in boarders to earn a little extra cash. Our modern concepts of privacy and space hadn’t taken hold yet. Such systems could work again.