The Great Depression In Weimar Germany

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The Great Depression was the severe economic downturn that affected western industrialised countries, in particular, Weimar Germany. The infamous Wall Street Crash of October 1929 in the United States had triggered the beginning of the Great Depression as millions of investors on Wall Street were extinguished. Although the effects of the Great Depression had only started after 1929, a few events commencing from 1923 had been as significant in contribution to causing the Great Depression as the Wall Street Crash was. These events are subject to debate as to which were considered more or less significant as they were all influencing factors to the Great Depression that affected Germany and its history.

On October 24th 1929, share prices on
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The people of Weimar Germany were using wheelbarrows to carry their money to go shopping. Pensioners were hit hard by hyperinflation as their fixed income pensions became worthless as well as middle class workers whose savings had become valueless as prices soared. People went to extreme measures to survive such as, during the winter of 1923, many burnt their furniture to keep their fires burning for heat as well as restaurants were unable to reprint menus fast enough to keep up with the ever changing prices.[4] After making devastating choices to sell family antiques to try and keep up with the hyperinflation in order to survive, it became quite apparent why many middle class citizens, who had experience the wrath of hyperinflation, turned away from the Social Democratic Party and started supporting Communist parties like the Kommunistische Partei Deutschlands (KPD) or the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP) which was better known as the Nazi Party. The shunning of the Social Democratic Party eventually resulted in its…show more content…
In 1928, Hitler and his Nazi Party had only 12 seats in the Reichstag, Weimar Germany’s parliament, and by July 1932 its seat count had soared to 230 and the Nazi Party had become the largest party in the Reichstag. The depression of 1929 had brought poverty and unemployment, which at the time, made it clear that the Weimar Republic was not working. In January 1933, with all of Hitler’s success in becoming the largest party in the Reichstag, President Hindenburg, who had been running Germany during this time, and his vice chancellor, Franz von Papen, had met secretly with the Cabinet, a body of high-ranking officials who discuss and make policies. On the 30th of January, Hitler was appointed Chancellor, after being offered the post of vice-Chancellor and refusing it and demanding he be of higher ranking. Hindenburg and von Papen appeased Hitler and took the risk. This was because, with only a few Nazis in the cabinet, Hindenburg and von Papen believed they could suppress Hitler’s effect on the people and his extremist demands. They used Hitler to gain support for the policies that needed passing in the Reichstag, as well as controlling the Communists. Hitler then used Article 48 in the Constitution of the Weimar Republic to combine and consolidate his title as Führer, a combination of Chancellor and
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