The Great Depression

by Cicely Roane

What happened?

In October 1929, the stock market crashed. This day is known as " Black Tuesday ", the start of the Great Depression. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell almost 2.3 percent and the market lost between eight and nine billion dollars in value. The stock market continued to decline until the end of the Great Depression in 1939 when World War two put the industry into high gear.

Who was affected?

Unemployment rose an wages fell for workers. The use of credit for the purchase of homes, cars, furniture, and household appliances resulted in foreclosure and repossessions. Businesses failed and workers lost their jobs. By 1932 the unemployment rate shot up past twenty percent. Millions were homeless, thousands of banks and businesses had failed, and many drifted from town to town, looking for non-existent jobs.

How is the Great Depression presented in To Kill A Mockingbird?

In To Kill A Mockingbird, Atticus says, " Tell them-tell them they must never do this again. Times are too hard..."(p.286) . When Atticus says, "Times are too hard", he meant that the economy is bad because of the depression, and he doesn't want people to give what they have to him. In chapter 2, it states, " The Cunninghams are country folks,farmers, and the crash hit them hardest. " (p,27). Atticus said this because in the Great Depressions, farmers struggled the most because the Dust Bowl destroyed their crops, and because the stock market crashed, prices for goods fell.