Roy L. Gray, the Most Average Man

In 1927, William S. Dutton, a writer for American magazine, decided to locate America's most average man. The requirements were that whoever it was had to be:

A native-born American, of average age, average size, average education and average viewpoint. He had to own an average home on an average street, drive an average automobile and be head of a family of four, which is the average used by the census bureau. He had to be engaged in an average one-man business, be neither a leader nor a laggard in public affairs, neither prominent nor obscure, popular or unpopular.

To conduct his search, Dutton used the census report, a map, and a weather chart to select America's most average city, which he decided was Fort Madison, Iowa. Then he conducted a survey of Fort Madison's residents to determine who the most average man living there was.

He finally settled on Roy L. Gray, owner of a clothing store. Gray was 43 years old, married, and had two children.

Dutton knocked on Gray's door and informed him that he was the most average man in America. Gray seemed to take the news in stride. He agreed to an interview, and then was whisked off to Chicago where he was given the VIP treatment, which included getting to meet the mayor. Then he returned to his average life, and as far as I can tell never made the news again.

He should have tried to hook up with Miss Typical.

Rushville Daily Republican - Oct 26, 1927

The Lincoln Star - Oct 25, 1927

     Posted By: Alex - Thu Feb 16, 2017
     Category: Awards, Prizes, Competitions and Contests | Boredom | 1920s

If only his name was Roy G. Biv.
Posted by Virtual on 02/16/17 at 08:46 AM
Ah, but if he had hooked up with Miss Typical, he would have had an adventurous affair - and therefore, no longer been average!
Posted by Richard Bos on 02/16/17 at 02:27 PM
I read a science fiction short story many years ago. I don't remember who wrote it, but I think it was written in the 1950's. The premise of selecting "Joe Average" was similar. The bottom line though was that since he was the 'MOST' average : He was the only that gets to vote.
Posted by BMN on 02/17/17 at 06:22 PM
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