The experience that the majority of urban and rural Americans shared together during the depression was a flat out lack of income. The differences were very few, but in the cities, the depression was more prominently visible because of a higher percentage of the population (Schultz 2014). Besides the lack of income and employment, most Americans underwent periods of time being extremely hungry. In the cities, people spent hours waiting in breadlines and were losing their homes to only end up living on the streets in communities referred to as "Hoovervilles" nicknamed after the president (Schultz 2014). In the country, families suffered because of unusual droughts of the 1930 's that caused crops to fail miserably meant the already indebted farmers commonly lost their properties. At one time in 1932, there were near to 250,000 homeless children throughout America. By far the ones who fared much worse off were African Americans owing to the fact that they were already impoverished anyway. The fact was white Americans were preferable as employees at that day and age, so black Americans were considered the first to be fired in …show more content…
Strangely enough, the hopes of Americans stayed alive primarily through the leisure activities that they had adopted so readily in the 1920 's, movies and radio. The entertainment industry made humongous strides in the 1930 's and was a place the public could escape to which allowed the "American Dream" to stay alive (Schultz 2014). The major themes of the movie industry were to either made the situation comical or to make it a story to encourage the average Joe. The American writers also saw a climb in popularity, especially when they wrote about why the country was suffering. During all of this, the political world was shifting to the left, trying to find a way to change without changing for the
Great Depression The great depression has been considered one of the worst economic downfalls in history, due to many different reasons. This economic depression affected many people now in different ways but all because of the same reason. Some of the groups affected by this turmoil were the farmers, wage workers, and the labor unions. All three of these groups of people were affected by the depression in a few ways each with a negative outcome.
Due to the loss of their own capital in either the Stock Market Crash or bank closures, many businesses had to begin cutting back their workers' hours or wages and had to lay people off. As a result American citizens lost their jobs and money was scarce, families were starving, homes were being foreclosed on, and families lacked sufficient food and clothing due to the lack of goods. Unfortunately, during the Great Depression, the Great Plains also were hit hard with both a drought and terrible dust storms, creating what became known as the “Dust Bowl”, small farmers were hit especially as hard. While already in debt and struggling financially before the economic crisis farmers had to borrow money from banks for seeds and paid it back when their crops came in. When the dust storms damaged the crops, which meant farmers could not feed himself and his family, he also could not pay back his debt to the government and banks.
In 1930’s, America encountered the worst depression. The stock market crash of 1929 was caused by the high prices leading many people to invest in stocks and take excessive loans from the banks. Many banking systems failed and people were left unemployed. Farmers lost their farms due to the Dust Bowl in the early 1930’s. In the time Herbert Hoover, the president at that time felt that the government shouldn’t interfere with such events.
During the Great Depression, the U.S. was facing a plethora of problems. The economy collapsed and a huge portion of the money was among a very small number of very wealthy individuals. Common people and workers resorted to living in villages called Hoovervilles where the houses were made up of whatever could be salvaged. Before the Great Depression began people took out loans carelessly without money to back it up; people were paid too little and goods cost too much. The result of a larger amount of goods were produced than sold eventually lead to an economic downfall.
The percentage of Americans that were losing jobs was outrageous “25 percent of all workers and 37 percent of all nonfarm workers were completely out of work. ”(Great Depression) and that only increased. The people moved and were kicked out of their lands feed to find work elsewhere but work was scarce and was no where to be found. The african americans also had a harder time finding work as the whites were given unfair priority. Their was a substantial gap between the rich and the poor and the poor was the lowest percentage of people in the Americas.
African Americans face a struggle with racism which has been present in our country before the Civil War began in 1861. America still faces racism today however, around the 1920’s the daily life of an African American slowly began to improve. Thus, this time period was known by many, as the “Negro Fad” (O’Neill). The quality of life and freedom of African Americans that lived in the United States was constantly evolving and never completely considered ‘equal’. From being enslaved, to fighting for their freedom, African Americans were greatly changing the status quo and beginning to make their mark in the United States.
Both, urban and rural Americans suffered during the Great Depression, but not in the same way. Many urban Americans had to deal with living in large communities of homes made out of cardboard boxes due to homelessness and lack of food in the cites (Schultz, 2013). At the same time, rural Americans were losing their farms due to the crops as a result of the drought. The Great Depression was a perfect time for the Communist Party of the United States to thrive, as a large portion of Americans believed that Capitalism was the cause of the whole thing.
Many of Hoover’s policies favored big businesses and he believed that the growth of the economy depended on increasing capital given to big businesses would combat the depression, which is also known as the Trickle Down economics. If the government aided big businesses then their investments and success would “trickle-down” to the working class, this improving and expanding the economy (Doc 5). Many people criticized Hoover and his policies for not helping the needy. He refused to provide federal relief programs to help unemployed since he thought people would not be motivated to work if the government aided them (OI).As conditions worsened, makeshift homes popped up all over America and were nicknamed “Hoovervilles”, after Herbert Hoover. Hoover believed that that individual initiative and big businesses would solve the problems of the depression and that the economy would recover on its own (OI).
Extreme poverty was really big during the Great Depression. During the time, there weren't many nice houses like everyone would want to live in. In the second and fifth picture, it illustrates what people had to call "home". Many houses were taken away from them during the Great Depression and was never given back to them. Most of the houses that the people lived in after the Great Depession weren't safe at all.
What other events combined with the economic crash to make the Depression so harsh? Urban centers had turned into uninhabited areas. Grim shantytowns, bitterly dubbed "Hoovervilles," were made from crates and cartons. Meanwhile, a drought withered crops and made the Great Plains into badlands.
Economic involvements had a bigger impact on the great depression. The great depression was a time of need for the Americans. Due to the supplies and accessories shipped out during the war, America was low on supplies, money and control, and president Herbert Hoover did very little in an attempt to overcome this problem. Men and women were driven into what were called Hoovervilles, which was a collection of teepee huts gathered together to make a community. Just as the people thought they had hit rock bottom, a switch of presidents helped make all the difference.
Harsh Times Lives for African Americans were difficult. From separation to slavery African Americans endured a lot during the 1930s. There were people that made it either easy or hard for African Americans. There were people that stood up for African Americans. There were others who tried to make it harder on African Americans.
Maybe people care a lot about what other people think; or, maybe they just do not care at all. Some people live by what other people want or think is “normal.” Other people live the way they want to live and do not care about the things other people want them to be. Women tend to struggle with this alot. Stereotypes, inequalities, and politics were not things women in the 1930s wanted to live by; although, they managed to make it better for themselves through political action over time.
In what ways did the Great Depression affect the American people? After a decade of economic prosperity, what seemed like an era that defined the concept of the American dream, quickly came to an end when the stock market on Wall Street collapsed in 1929. The aftermath of the events that occurred on Wall Street would put its heavy mark on the years to follow among the citizens of the United States. Banks closed down, unemployment rose and homelessness increased. It was a widespread national catastrophe that had its impacts on both poor and rich.
The Great Depression was not only one of the defining moments in American history, but also one of the most difficult hardships Americans faced. During the Great Depression, which was ignited by the stock market crash of 1929, people faced unemployment, poverty, and changes in government the ultimately shaped America today. Many people believe that The Great Depression began when the stock market crashed on October 29, 1929 (“The Great Depression,” American Express). In the mid to late 1920’s the stock market grew majorly, the stock prices skyrocketed gaining interest from all kinds of people.