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The modern way wood framed structures are built these days as opposed to balloon framing. This method came about partly as a result of increasd fire safety, but also because of the economy of using "studs" as the wall structural members. Balloon framed walls are built the full height from subfloor to the plates the rafters sit on and the intermediate floor joists rest on a ledger board let into the studs. This creats a draft space from the first story stud space to the second story stud space giving fire a path between the floors. Fire blocking was used to close these spaces, but it was pretty labor intensive. Platform framing separates the floors with a top and double plate sealing the stud spaces below the second story joists. Also with the change from lath and plaster finishes to sheetrock or drywall finishes, the nailing surfaces the double plate provides was needed for the top edge of the rock.
As the forests were depleted, the longer straight lumber needed for the studs was harder to come by, so the modern stud became the primary vetical structural member. Being only 92 1/4", they were easily handled by the reduced labor force as wood framed construction became less labor intensive, and more useful lumber could be produced from smaller and lower quality trees. Whole lumber mills were erected as stud mills with that being the only product. The second growth could be cut sooner because a desirable product could be made from younger trees.

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