My brother lives now in Southwest Washington state, about an hour from Portland, in what was once a clearcut forest. A small river (to big and fierce to be a stream) runs through his property. Lots of stumps and most of the existing trees are moderate sized junipers. My dad was born in 1899 in Jallons, France, and his parents were older, probably born in the 1860s or 70s. Interesting to think about how people made a living in those days. Everything was pretty rough, and there was not much safety awareness in those days, so lots of people were seriously injured while working. Not only that, but average lifespan was pretty short and brutish. I find it interesting that women married quite young in those days because one or two births, and they'd die of sepsis. Germ theory was still a bit controversial even into the 1880s, and there weren't many things you could do to survive. Viral infections were really unknown. Surgery was antiseptic, that is, swab everything down with carbolic acid, which was also used to clean and dress wounds. Penicillin came about during WWII, and saved huge numbers of our soldiers.
Alexander Flemming first found penicillin in 1928, but it came into use in 1942, a year before I was born. Many of us here were born and raised in the first generation to have antibiotics. Lifespan went from 43 years in 1800, up to 78 years in 2012 (USA figure), so some of us are pushing pretty near the average span today, especially the bacon eaters among us.
We're pretty lucky to be alive now compared to back then. The good old days weren't that good.
The more I do, the less I accomplish.