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The Great Depression Notes

by: Torie Pierce

The Great Depression Notes HIST 2112 - US History Since Reconstruction of 1878

Torie Pierce
Clayton State
GPA 2.67

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About this Document

These notes cover the great depression and the events following the event.
History 2112
Dr. Jelani Favors
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Torie Pierce on Saturday July 2, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HIST 2112 - US History Since Reconstruction of 1878 at Clayton State University taught by Dr. Jelani Favors in Summer 2016. Since its upload, it has received 55 views.


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Date Created: 07/02/16
1. Depression and Dealing a. The Economic Pitfalls of America PT.1 i. The Unraveling of a dream and the Weaving of a Nightmare 1. Problems of the “New Era” a. A lot of the wealth still remains with the few or the people at the top (Robber Barons) creating a lot of wage disparity b. 1929-the richest 0.1% of American families had as much total income as the bottom 42% of American families (Major Wealth Gap) 2. From 1928-1929 many leading stocks doubled and even tripled in price (Herbert Hoover is president at this time) a. Stock speculation-to guess ow the stocks rise and fall. Many made money off of that which fueled people to invest a lot and mostly all of their money into Wall Street. 3. A “get rich quick” philosophy, dominated the market ii. The Crash 1. Problems with the “New Area” a. People were investing in possibilities and not realities b. On October 29,1929 panicked investors dumped their stocks at any price on what was referred to as “Black Tuesday” i. People had warned Herbert Hoover that this stock boom wasn’t going to last threver w c. In a span of seven days (Oct 29-Nov. 5 ) investors lost more money than the U.S spent on World War 1 (+32 billion dollars) d. Between Oct. and Dec of 1929, the number of unemployed workers jumped from fewer than 500,000 to more than 4 million i. Factories shut down, banks were crushed e. 1933-25% of the American workforce were unemployed 2. The numbers a. Construction fell 78% b. Manufacturing fell 54% c. Stock investment fell 98% d. U.S steel stock price fell from $262 a share to $22 a share 3. Montgomery Ward stock price fell from $138 a share in 1929 to $4 a share in 1932 4. Govt policies that helped to produce the crash: a. Failure to enforce antitrust laws b. Failure to regulate banking or the stock market c. Reducing tax rates on the wealthy encouraged stock speculation and contributed to the unequal distribution of income d. Hooverville-camp sites for the homeless during the great depression. Named Hooverville to pick fun at Herbert Hoover who was president at this time 5. Gender Segregation and Discrimination (Cont.) a. Majority of industries who took a hit was male jobs (Construction and other businesses) b. The city council of Akron, Ohio, decided that public agencies should stop employing wives c. Three-fourths of the nation’s school systems refused to hire married woman as teachers d. Two Thirds of the nation’s school systems dismissed those who were already married. i. Sexism has started to arise 6. “Last Hired first fired” slogan for urban league (addressed issues such as discrimination in employment agencies) a. 1934-federal government notes that 17% of white citizens cannot support themselves versus 38% for blacks 1. Depression and Dealing a. The Economic Pitfalls of America Pt.2 i. A new deal for America 1. Hover’s Response to the Crisis a. President Hoover created the President’s Organization for Unemployment Relief to help raise funds for voluntary relief agencies i. Still has a Laisse Faire initiative of government “hands off”, letting the people handle it itself b. 1932- only 8 states provided a “token” of assistance c. Hoover’s disconnection with the working class people of America was best exemplified through his treatment of the “Bonus Army” (veterans were promised the bonus after the war) d. July 28 -General Douglass Macarthur led cavalry, infantry, and tanks against the marchers who want their bonus 2. “We have Nothing to Fear but Fear itself” a. The election of 1932 was a landslide victory for the Governor of New York, Franklin Delano Roosevelt b. The first 3 months of FDR’s administration was known as the “Hundred Days” of the New Deal c. Through the New Deal, numerous laws, acts, and programs were created to stimulate the American economy: i. Emergency Banking Act ii. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) which guaranteed bank deposits up to $2,500 (Helped to stimulate American Confidence) iii. Glass-Steagall Act-separated investment and commercial banking iv. Securities Act-reformed the sale of stocks to prevent insider abuses v. The Security Exchange (SEC) regulated the stock market vi. Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) –furnished funds to state and local governments vii. Agriculture adjustment Act viii. Civilian Conservation Corp (CCC) –targeted the employment of young man, gave them federal jobs to help rebuild American infrastructure (Dams, schools, bridges) ix. Tennessee Valley Authority Act (TVA) x. National Recovery Administration (NRS)- create secure jobs and wages sponsored by the American Government 1. Roosevelt alphabet soup campaign- many people believed FDR was creating big government and unconstitutional for him to create all these policies 2. Fire side Chat- radio conversations there FDR would come on and just talk to the American people 3. The second New deal: Lifting and Weeding a. As the next presidential election approached, FDR was under criticism of forgetting the “Forgotten man” b. Huey D long- governor of Louisiana that created the share our wealth program c. The second new deal instituted new policies such as: i. The Wagner National labor relations act- guaranteed workers’ rights to organize unions ii. National Labor relations Board (NLRB)-was set up to enforce the provisions put forth in the Wagner act 1. The NLRB (a part of the federal government) would step in as a mediator to protect the rights of American government iii. Social security act 1. Provided unemployment compensation and old age pensions iv. Resettlement administration a. Attempted to help poor farmers; established the soil conservation service to address the soil erosion (created the dust bowl because the farmers would over plant) v. Work progress Administration (WPA) 1. Authorized $5 billion in aid for emergency public employment (for artists, poets); before its end in 1943, created over 9 million jobs) vi. Critiques of FDR’s recovery 1. Unconstitutional 2. Fiscally irresponsible 3. Not nearly far reaching enough vii. Redistribution of Wealth viii. Leagacy of the second new deal 1. Progressive legislation 2. Working class upsurge/advancement of labor unions 3. From subjects to citizens


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