we didn't on how many kids do this even in my time if they did
In the U.S., we have this notion that homeschooling is fairly new but parents teaching children at home predates the modern school system. In many countries it was common for families of certain status and wealth to have tutors come to their homes to teach and for poor families to not send their kids to school at all but to teach them what they needed to know to work fields and become wives.
It was not so long ago that the one room schoolhouse that was owned and run by the town or community fell out of favor. The system for education in those days is much like what many homeschoolers today are doing. I mentioned my sets of books, many of those are from the 1800s and were the most used books in the one room schoolhouse. Most of mine are reprints but I have made a few good finds of vintage books. Some of the methods I use go back to ancient times and was the common way to educate then.
So to answer the question of how many people homeschooled or if anyone even did, you have to ask what you count as homeschooling.