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The Great Depression

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The Great Depression. 1929-1939. Stock market crash Didn’t realize the effect it would have No money to replenish what was borrowed. Many found being broke humiliating. The Roaring 20’s. The new concept of “credit” People were buying: Automobiles Appliances Clothes Fun times reigned

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1929 1939
  • Stock market crash
  • Didn’t realize the effect it would have
  • No money to replenish what was borrowed

Many found being broke humiliating.

the roaring 20 s
The Roaring 20’s
  • The new concept of “credit”
  • People were buying:
    • Automobiles
    • Appliances
    • Clothes
  • Fun times reigned
    • Dancing
    • Flappers
    • Drinking
why was this bad
Why was this bad?
  • Credit system
    • People didn’t really have the money they were spending
  • WWI
    • The U.S. was a major credit loaner to other nations in need
    • Many of these nations could not pay us back
the stock market
The Stock Market
  • People bought stocks on margins
    • If a stock is $100 you can pay $10 now and the rest later when the stock rose
  • Stocks fall
    • Now the person has less than $100 and no money to pay back
and then
And then….
  • With people panicking about their money investors tried to sell their stocks
    • This leads to a huge decline in stocks
    • Stocks were worthless now
  • People who bought on “margins” now could not pay
  • Investors were average people that were now broke

President Hoover

  • Herbert Hoover was president at the start.
  • Philosophy: We’ll make it!
  • What He Did: Nothing
  • The poor were looking for help and he had no ideas on how to provide them with aide.

What about the people?

  • Farmers were already feeling the effects
    • Prices of crops went down
    • Many farms foreclosed
  • People could not afford luxuries
    • Factories shut down
    • Businesses went out
  • Banks could not pay out money
  • People could not pay their taxes
    • Schools shut down due to lack of funds
  • Many families became homeless and had to live in shanties
  • Some families were forced to live in shanty towns
    • A grouping of shacks and tents in vacant lots
  • They were referred to as “Hooverville” because of President Hoover’s lack of help during the depression.

Out of the Dust:

The South

and the

Dust Bowl

the south was buried
The South Was Buried
  • Crops turned to dust=No food to be sent out
  • Homes buried
  • Fields blown away
  • South in state of emergency
  • Dust Bowl the #1 weather crisis of the 20th century
  • When he was inaugurated unemployment had increased by 7 million.
  • Poor sections (like Harlem) had 50% of the population unemployed.
  • Installed the “New Deal”
People everywhere were effected by the depression.
  • It wasn’t till President Roosevelt took over and tried to put the economy back together that people even saw a glimmer of hope.

To Kill a


major historical happenings
Major Historical Happenings...
  • Jim Crow Laws
  • Scottsboro Trials
  • Recovering from the Great Depression
  • Racial Injustice
  • Poor South
jim crow laws
Jim Crow Laws
  • After the American Civil War most states in the South passed anti-African American legislation. These became known as Jim Crow laws.
  • These laws included segregation in…
    • Schools -- Hospitals
    • Theaters -- Water fountains
    • Restaurants
    • Hotels
    • Public transportation
    • Some states forbid inter-racial marriages
These laws were instituted in 1896 and were not abolished till the late 1950’s (even then still not completely).

Scottsboro Boys Trial

  • 9 young African-American men (13-20) accused of raping 2 white girls in 1931
  • Immediately sentenced to death
  • Trials went on for nearly 15 years before all the men were dismissed
Started on a train bound for Memphis
  • Several white men boarded and picked a fight with the black men.
  • Whites were forced off train by the 12 black men. The white men reported to authorities that the black men had raped two white girls on the train.
  • They were immediately arrested and tried in front of an all-white jury.
Wrote To Kill a Mockingbird in 1960
  • Based the story on her life growing up in Monroeville, Alabama
  • TKAM was the only novel she ever wrote.
The character of “Dill,” Scout and Jem’s playmate in the novel was based upon Lee’s actual neighbor, Truman Capote.
  • Capote is famous for amongst other things, In Cold Blood and Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
  • It has been said that he gave Lee mockingbird as a gift.
In 1962, the novel was turned into a film starring Gregory Peck.
  • It received a humanitarian award and several Academy Award nominations.