The Great Depression Project

Camia Flowers 03-14-14 6th period

Causes and effects of the Great Depression, 1929-1933

  • One of the causes of The Great Depression was the Wall Street Crash. Which millions invested in the boom market of 1928 and millions lost their money in October 1929, when it collapsed.
  • The crash was not the only Cause of The Great Depression. Other things Contributed such as Uneven distribution of income, stock market speculation, excessive use of credit, and overproduction of consumer goods. A few More things contributed such as the weak farm economy, the government's policies, and Global economic problems occurring.
  • The economic decline reached rock bottom in 1932. Complete recovery only came with the beginning of another World War, 1939. The U.S. Gross National Product value dropped from $104 billion to $56 billion in four years. The Great Depression caused 20% of all banks to close and wiped out 10 million savings accounts. on top of that the unemployment rate had reached 13 million people being unemployed. Farmers and African Americans had increased difficulties. Poverty and Homelessness increased as well.

Hoover's Policies

  • Hoover went about things the way he wanted to. He responded to the world depression by signing a law schedule of tariff rates that was the highest in history. The Hawley- Smoot tariff passed and it set tax increases ranging from 31% to 49% on foreign imports. This was thought to help protect U.S. Business leaders from foreign competition. Which caused European countries to have higher tariffs of their own against U.S. goods. By the time 1931 came the conditions was so bad the Dawes Plan could not continue. This lead to Hoover suspending payments of international debt.
  • The next step that Hoover took was to sign off into law programs that offered help to in-debt farmers and struggling businesses.Congress created the Reconstruction finance Corporation in 1932 to help railroads, banks, life insurance companies, and any other financial institutions. Hoover thought that The RFC would help the big businesses then rub off on the small businesses.
  • Farmers band together in the mid-west and created the Farm Holiday Association, which was an attempt to reverse the drop prices. Also, around this time in 1932 about a thousand unemployed WWI veterans marched in D.C., to demand payments of their bonuses immediately that was promised to them at a later time and date. Which was promised to them in 1945. Congress failed to give them their bonuses and they were order to break up and leave D.C. After they were order General MacArthur, used tanks and tear gas to get the veterans to break up and leave D.C. After the incident many Americans started to dislike President Hoover and called him heartless and uncaring.
  • In the nominations for the Election of 1932 Hoover was renominated and the democrats nominated Franklin D. Roosevelt for president. Roosevelt then preposed a plan called the "New Deal" for the American people. Most Americans wanted change so they were going for Roosevelt and not February 1933 the 20th amendment was passed and ratified in October 1933. The 20th amendment shortened the period between presidential elections and inaugurations.

Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal

  • Franklin was the only child of a wealthy New York family. Franklin adored his cousin Theodore Roosevelt and wanted to follow his footsteps and be a New York State Legislator. And later wanted to be a U.S. assistant secretary of the navy. FDR was nominated for vice president in 1920. A year after being nominated for VP Franklin was paralyzed by polio in 1921. Roosevelt could never walk alone and required assistance of crutches, braces, and a wheelchair. Roosevelt had a great warm personality, and was a great speaker. Roosevelt was married to Eleanor Roosevelt who took her own right as a leader. Eleanor became known as the most active 1st lady in history. Eleanor influenced Franklin to support minorities and the less fortune.
  • In 1932, Roosevelt expressed vague promises but no concrete programs. Roosevelt didn't have exact plans on how to end the depression, but was prepared and willing to experiment with political solutions to economic problems. Roosevelt had came up with his own deal which was the three R's in his acceptance speech. The Three R's represented: Relief for people out of work, recovery for businesses and the economy, and reform of American economic institutions. Roosevelt turned to advisers and Brian Trust to help him with the New Deal. Roosevelt had a very diverse group of advisers such as Catholics, African Americans, Jews, and women. His secretary was even a woman and her name was Frances Perkins. Frances Perkins was the first woman to ever serve in president's cabinet.
  • Roosevelt called Congress for a hundred day long session after being sworn into office on March 4, 1933. Roosevelt then came up with the Bank Holiday on March 6, 1933. The Bank Holiday allowed banks to close and reopen after allowing enough time for government t reorganize them on a sound basis. Roosevelt went on to pass the Beer-Wine Revenue Act, this legalized the sale of beer and wine in the late 1933s, which brought Prohibition to a halt. Then Roosevelt started the first of many fireside chats on March 12, 1933.When he started the fireside chat he let the listeners know that the banks were fine and safe. After the fireside chat he then implemented the Emergency Banking relief act, The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation(FDIC), The Home Owners Loan Corporation(HOLC), and The Farm Credit Administration as his financial recovery programs. He then started programs for the unemployed like: The Federal Emergency Relief Administration(FERA), The Public Works Administration (PWA), The Civilian Conservation Corps(CCC), and The Tennessee Valley Authority(TVA). After these were put into play the next big thing was the Industrial recovery program. This program was also known as The National recovery Administration(NRA). The NRA was to try to guarantee reasonable profits for business and fair wages and hours for labor. The NRA also gave workers the right to organize and bargain collectively. After the NRA was created they Created the AAA which was known as Agricultural Adjustment Administration. This Administration encouraged farmers to reduce production and boost prices. The NRA and AAA was declared unconstitutional in the late 1935s .
  • Roosevelt stressed that he however, is not finished revising the nation of it's depression. In the late 1933s aqnd during most of the 1934s Roosevelt and the Democratic Congress started enacted more help like: The Civil Works Administration (CWA), The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), The Federal Housing Administration(FHA).

The Second New Deal

  • The Second New Deal was launched in the summer of 1935. The second new deal dealt with Relief and reform for the people. Relief for people started with the WPA spending billions of dollars to give people jobs during 1935 to 1940. This operation was under Hopkins and employed 3.4 million people who need financial relief. The jobs paid twice what the relief rate was but less than minimum wage of regular workers. The jobs WPA provided was constructing new bridges, Roads, airports, and public unemployed.The WPA also paid unemployed artists, writers, and actors to paint morals, write histories, and perform plays. The WPA also provided Part-time jobs for young people who stayed in high school and college called the National Youth Administration(NYA). Then the Resettlement Administration was put into play under the direction of the Brian Trust and Rexford tugwell. The Resettlement Administration provided loans to sharecroppers, tenants, and small farmers.
  • The reform legislation showed that industrial workers and farmers needed to receive more government help then business members and upper class men. The National Labor Relations Board(NLRB) was empowered to enforce the Wagner Act and make sure that workers' rights were protected. The Rural Electrification Administration (REA) provided loans for electrical cooperation's to supply power in rural areas. In 1935 taxes increased for the wealthy, and taxes increased on large gifts from parents to child, and also on capital gain.
  • In 1935, the Social Security Act created a federal insurance program based upon the automatic collection of taxes from employees and employers. This trust fund would later be used to make monthly payments to retired people over 65 years of age.
  • In 1936, the Democrats nominated Roosevelt for a second term even though the economy was weak and still unstable, but was improving. Roosevelt was being challenged by Republican nominee for president Alfred (AL) Landon. Landon criticized Democrats for their decisions but accepted most of the new deal legislation. Roosevelt was beating Landon, but winning every state but Maine and Vermont. Roosevelt also got more than 60% of the votes. new Support came from African Americans mainly in northern cities, who left the republican party because of Roosevelt's New Deal.
American History - Part 173 - Hoover - 1932 - Time for a change - FDR wins
Roosevelt and the New Deal Part 1
The Second New Deal- The Roosevelts, WPA, and Society