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The Great Depression . Slide 1. The Nations Sick Economy. 1. What were some causes of the Great Depression? 2. What happened to the price of farm products during the 1920’s?. Towards the end of the 1920’s serious problems threatened economic prosperity.

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the nations sick economy
The Nations Sick Economy

1. What were some causes of the Great Depression?

2. What happened to the price of farm products during the 1920’s?

Towards the end of the 1920’s serious problems threatened economic prosperity.

1. Farmers faced hard times because the price of

crops declined after WWI

2. Easy credit put many people in debt

3. Overproduction of consumer goods


  • Congress tried to help the farmers with price supports, but Coolidge vetoed them.
  • More than 70% earned less than needed for a decent standard of living.
the stock market collapses
The Stock Market Collapses

3. What does buying stock on margin mean?

4. What does speculation mean?

  • Speculation: Buying Stocks on the chance of a quick profit without considering risks.
  • Buying on the Margin: pay part of selling price in cash, borrow the rest from the bank
  • Early September stock prices peaked, then fell.
  • Investors begin selling their stock
  • Prices edge downward creating a panic
  • Investors try to unload their stock

Slide 2

the stock market collapses con t
The Stock Market Collapses (Con’t)

5. The day the stock market crashed became known as what?

  • Black Tuesday: October 29, 1929- orders to sell stock at any price begin to swamp the stock exchange.
  • Fortunes made during the boom were lost in hours
  • Stock Market Crash signaled the end of prosperity in the 1920’s.

Slide 3

bank failures
Bank Failures

6. What caused many banks to fail?

  • Thousands of bank failures also contributed

to the Great Depression.

  • Rumors often led bank customers to panic and withdraw all their funds. This is called a “run on the bank.”
  • When the bank ran out of funds, the other depositors lost all their money and the bank went bankrupt.
business failures
Business Failures

7. Why did many businesses go bankrupt between 1929 and 1933?

  • 90,000 businesses went bankrupt between 1929 and 1933.
  • One reason for this was that many industries had failed to adjust their high production rates to the declining demand in the late 1920s.
  • This was especially true with what are called “durable goods,” things that last a long time, like refrigerators, washing machines, and automobiles.
  • These surplus goods were already being stockpiled in company warehouses before the depression hit. Without buyers, companies could not afford to make more of these items. Factories had to close down.
world wide depression
World Wide Depression

8. What led to a dramatic drop in world trade

  • Throughout the 1920s, while the American economy was booming, European countries had been suffering economic hard times. They were still trying to recover from the impact of WWI.

Also, the U.S. passed the Hawley-Smoot tariff on imported goods to give an advantage to American industries.

The High Tariff rate led to a dramatic drop in world trade.

unemployment hurts everyone
Unemployment Hurts Everyone

9. Why did people refer to shantytowns as Hoovervilles?

10. Why did the psychological stress of the Great Depression to rise?

  • Hit industrial cities of North the hardest
    • People struggle with feelings of boredom and humiliation
    • Suicides went up
    • Many were forced to beg to feed their families
    • Shantytowns or “Hoovervillessprang up- blamed President Hoover for not helping.
    • Charitable organizations opened up soup kitchens to feed the hungry.

Slide 4

the dust bowl
The Dust Bowl

11. What caused The Dust Bowl?

  • Early 1930’s- lower than average rainfall
  • Farmers had removed the thick protective layers of prairie grassland
  • Farmers exhausted the land through over production
dust bowl cont
Dust Bowl Cont…

12. Who wrote a novel about Oklahomans fleeing the Dust Bowl?

More than a million people traveled along

Route 66 to California- heard they needed people to help pick the crops.

They were known as “Okies”-

paid low-migrant farm

worker wages

John Steinbeck wrote

“The Grapes of Wrath

about Oklahomans

fleeing the Dust Bowl

during the Great Depression



13. What was the name given to men and boys who rode the rails looking for work?

Many teenagers looked for a way out of the suffering. Hundreds of thousands of teenage boys and some girls joined thousands of out of work men and hopped aboard America's freight trains to zigzag the country in search of work, adventure, and an escape from

poverty. They were the sons of poor farmers, and out-of-work miners, and wealthy parents who had lost everything. “hoboes," as they were called, were eager to tour America for free.

president hoover loses his battle with the economy
President Hoover Loses His Battle With the Economy

14. What did Herbert Hoover ask businesses to do to help the economy?

15. What did Hoover believe the government should not do?

  • Hoover tried to restore confidence in the American economy.
  • Tried to convince businesses not to lay off employees
  • Hoover felt that the federal government should not give direct relief (giving payment or food to the poor.)
  • Hoover’s popularity declines
  • Many hold Hoover responsible for the Depression

Slide 9



16. What $700 million public works project was named after Hoover?

One project that Hoover approved did make a difference, the construction of a dam on the Colorado River. In the fall of 1929, nearly one year into his presidency, Hoover authorized construction of Boulder Dam (later called Hoover Dam). At 726 ft. high and 1,244 ft. long it would be the world's tallest dam and the second largest. This project put a lot of men to work, but it was not nearly enough.

bonus army marches into washington d c
Bonus Army Marches into Washington D.C.

17. Who made up the Bonus Army that marched on Washington?

  • WWI Veterans demand early pay of bonus promised to them for their service in the war
  • Hoover refuses
  • 20,000 Veterans march
  • General MacArthur ordered by Hoover to remove veterans
    • Armed with tanks, military rifles, tear gas torches- attacked unarmed veterans
    • Dozens injured
    • Vivid photos appeared in the paper

Slide 10

franklin delano roosevelt fdr emerges as a political leader
Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) Emerges as a Political Leader

18. Who were the candidates in the 1932 election?

19. What did Roosevelt call his plan for recovery from the Great Depression?

20. What did he hope the New Deal programs would do?

  • Roosevelt had a plan for recovery from the Great Depression called The New Deal
  • The New Deal programs would stimulate the economy
  • Roosevelt beat Hoover by a landslide in the 1932 election

Slide 11

president roosevelt
President Roosevelt

21. What was the first major action that Roosevelt took as president?

  • The first thing Roosevelt did was declare a “bank holiday,” closing U.S. banks temporarily to restore public confidence and prevent further bankruptcies.
  • Congress cooperated with the president to pass many reform measures aimed at relieving the symptoms of the Great Depression.


22. What did FDR call his series of radio broadcasts to the public?

On March 12, the day before the first banks were to reopen, President Roosevelt gave the first of his many fireside chats—radio talks about issues of public concern, explaining in clear, simple language his New Deal measures. These informal talks made Americans feel as if the president were talking directly to them.    



23. What was the primary purpose of FDR’s “Court packing plan?”

24. Which two New Deal programs were ruled unconstitutional?

In 1935, the Court struck down the NIRA (24)National Industrial Recovery Act) as unconstitutional. The next year, the Supreme Court struck down the Agricultural Adjustment Act 

23) Fearing that further Court decisions might dismantle the New Deal, President Roosevelt proposed that Congress enact a court-reform bill to allow him to appoint six new Supreme Court justices. This “Court-packing bill” aroused a storm of protest in Congress and the press. Many people believed that the president was violating principles of judicial independence and the separation of powers..



27) 1933Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC)Provided jobs for single males on conservation projects.

1933Federal Emergency Relief Administration (FERA) Helped states to provide aid for the26) unemployed.

1933Public Works Administration (PWA) Created jobs on government projects.

1933Civil Works Administration (CWA) Provided work in federal jobs.

25)1935Works Progress Administration (WPA)Quickly created as many jobs as possible—from construction jobs to positions in symphony orchestras.

1935National Youth Administration (NYA) Provided job training for unemployed young people and part-time jobs for needy students.

25. Which New Deal program created the most jobs?

26. Who did the Federal Emergency relief Administration try to help?

27. Which program showed Roosevelt's concern for the natural environment?



1933Emergency Banking Relief Act (EBRA) Banks were inspected by Treasury Department and those stable could reopen.

1933Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Protected bank deposits up to $5,000. (Today, accounts are protected up to $100,000.)

1933National Recovery Administration (NRA) Established codes of fair competition.

1934Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Supervised the stock market and eliminated dishonest practices.

1935Banking Act of 1935 Created seven-member board to regulate the nation's money supply and the interest rates on loans.

1936Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FDC) Required manufacturers to list ingredients in foods, drugs, and cosmetic products.



1933Agricultural Adjustment Administration (AAA) Aided farmers and regulated crop production. ( to raise the prices of farm products)

1933Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) Developed the resources of the Tennessee Valley.

1935Rural Electrification Administration (REA) Provided affordable electricity for isolated rural areas.

28. What was the main objective of the Agricultural Adjustment Act?



1933Home Owners Loan Corporation (HOLC) Loaned money at low interest to homeowners who could not meet mortgage payments.

1934Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Insured loans for building and repairing homes.

1937United States Housing Authority (USHA) Provided federal loans for low-cost public housing.



1935National Labor Relations Board (Wagner Act) Defined unfair labor practices and established the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to settle disputes between employers and employees.

1938Fair Labor Standards Act Established a minimum hourly wage and a maximum number of hours in the workweek for the entire country. Set rules for the employment of workers under 16 and banned hazardous factory work for those under 18.



1935Social Security Administration Provided a pension for retired workers and their spouses and aided people with disabilities.

when analyzing cartoons ask yourself
When analyzing cartoons ask yourself. . .
  • What is the scene depicting?
  • Are there labels or a title?
  • What symbolism do you see?
    • What do the objects represent?
    • Who are the characters and how are they drawn?
  • What is the cartoonist’s point-of-view on this issue?


1. What is the scene depicting?

Are there labels or a title?

What symbolism do you see?

What do the objects represent?

Who are the characters and how are they drawn?

What is the cartoonist’s point-of-view on this issue?

29. Using the questions above, what is your political analysis of this cartoon?



1.What is the scene depicting?

2.Are there labels or a title?

3.What symbolism do you see?

4.What do the objects represent?

5.Who are the characters and how are they drawn?

6.What is the cartoonists point-of-view on this issue?

30. Using the questions above, what is your political analysis of this cartoon?

lasting impact of the new deal
Lasting Impact of the New Deal

31. What are some of the lasting government programs left over from the New Deal?

32. Which policy had the biggest long term impact?

  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC)- insures banking accounts up to 100,000 dollars preventing bank failures
  • Security and Exchange Commission (SEC)- regulates and stabilizes the stock market
  • The Social Security Administration

pensions for the elderly aid to families with children unemployment compensation assistance for the handicapped