Great Depression

Length: 7 Pages 1644 Words

The years between 1930 and 1945 were among the most extraordinary in American history. From the depths of the Great Depression to the exhilaration of victory in World War Two, the American experience was marked by extremes of discontent, deprivation, dislocation and, finally, the feeling of undiluted triumph. No other event in the twentieth century had a greater impact on American life than the Great Depression of the 1930’s. The slump in the economy, the countless numbers of unemployment, and the swelling relief rolls were only half of the trouble. The other half, some may say greater half, was the emotional and psychological hardships that many Americans had to experience. These five factors are all brought into play when trying to understand the “worst economic crisis in American history.” “Stock trading in the late 1920’s captured the imagination of the broad American public.” (Faragher 735) The stock market became very popular, it was treated like a sporting event. Americans were following the prices the way they would follow great athletes. Americans were basically told that it was their duty to buy stocks. By the end of the 1920’s, stocks weren’t being bought because of their earning power anym Continue...


Other statistics put the figure that year above 16 million, or nearly one out of every three workers. (Faragher page 737) The Depression jumbled the psychological balance in many families. High costs of living and high living will come down. It wasn't easy going from having whatever you needed and then some at your fingertips, to having to rummage through trash to find clothing and scraps of food. Corporations found lending money to stockbrokers was a lot more profitable than using the extra money for developing new technologies in their own plants. Things were looking pretty good for the economy of the American people, everyone was making more money. The events that were occurring overseas pulled our nation steadily towards war. 2 million workers, or roughly 9 of the labor force, were out of work. Money was directly given for relief and funneled through state and local governments, this was the Federal Emergency Relief Administration Act. Tennessee Valley Authority was the economic development and cheap electricity for Tennessee Valley. Little did they know that this was only the first act of drama that was going to last for more than a decade. (Faragher page 743) All of these Acts and Administrations were part of Roosevelt's "New Deal. The female labor force grew by over 50. The war brought in a large number of new workers. Values will be adjusted, and enterprising people will pick up the wrecks from less competent people.