Life during the depression
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Life During the Depression. IV. Family Life. Effects on the Family 1. Basic need not met Many families did not have enough money to make ends meet Could not afford food, shelter, or clothing Men Leave Home In search of jobs men crisscrossed the country Many never returned.

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Life During the Depression

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Life During the Depression


IV. Family Life

  • Effects on the Family

    1. Basic need not met

    • Many families did not have enough moneyto make ends meet

    • Could not afford food, shelter, or clothing

  • Men Leave Home

    • In search of jobs men crisscrossed the country

    • Many never returned


  • Women go to work

    • Many worked outside the home during the depression

    • Worked long hours for little money

  • Effect on Children

    • Children dropped out of school to work

    • Some ran away from home to make it on their own


“Hoovervilles”, homeless camps named after the president


V. Farmers in the Depression

  • Financial Problems

  • Prices Bottom Out

    • Many farmers could not sell their crops

    • Cost more to grow and ships products than what they could sell them for


  • Foreclosures

    • Farmers could not pay loans so banks took ownership of their farms

    • Banks would auction off the farms

    • Communities came together and made very low bids so they could give the farms back to the farmers


  • The Dust Bowl

    • Early 1930s: The Great Plains hurt by drought

    • Heavy winds swept away the topsoil

    • Created dust storms which gave the area the name the Dust Bowl


Dust Bowl

The Dust Bowl refers to the area which was devastated first by drought then by wind-driven clouds of blown away topsoil that resembled dark storm clouds.

It was partially caused by poor farming practices and overgrazing that destroyed deep rooted natural grasses. When the strong winds came the crops farmers planted could not hold the soil and it blew away in clouds of “dust”.


Dust Bowl location


The “Okies”

Many farmers decided to pack up and leave their drought stricken farms and move west to California hoping for a new start. So many of the migrants were from Oklahoma they soon became known as “Okies”. Unfortunately, farming conditions in California were not much better. Many of the migrants ended up living in migrant/refugee camps.


Migrant camps in California where refugees came to make a new start


Popular song from the 1930s: Brother, can you spare a dime?

They used to tell me I was building a dream,And so I followed the mobWhen there as earth to plough or guns to bearI was always there right on the job.The used to tell me I was building a dreamWith peace and glory aheadWhy should I be standing in line just waiting for bread?Once I built a railroad, made it run,Made it race against time.Once I build a railroad, Now its doneBrother, can you spare a dime?Once I built a tower, to the sunBrick and rivet and lime,Once I built a tower,Now its doneBrother, can you spare a dime?Once in khaki suitesGee, we looked swellFull of that Yankee Doodle-de-dum.Half a million boots went sloggin' thru Hell,I was the kid with the drum.Say, don't you remember, they called me AlIt was Al all the timeSay, don't you remember I'm your Pal!Buddy, can you spare a dime?


Children Of Migrant/Refugees


“ covering everything, including ourselves, in a thick, brownish gray blanket…The door and windows were all shut tightly, yet those tiny particles seemed to seep through the very walls. It got into cupboards and clothes closets; our faces were as dirty as if we had rolled in the dirt; our hair was gray and stiff and we ground dirt between our teeth.”


VI. Minorities in the Great Depression

  • Mexicans

    • Many Mexican born farm workers and their families were deported

    • Some of their children were American-born (American citizens) but still deported

    • Government wanted their jobs to go to Americans


  • African Americans

    • Black workers were often last to be hired

    • Paid lower wages

    • Segregation in government work programs


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