The Great Depression
Credit Union Resources:The Great Depression
The Great Depression was the longest, most devastating economic slump experienced in the Western world. The Great Depression lasted from 1929 to 1939 and affected the United States, Europe, Canada, Japan, and several other countries throughout the world. It started with the stock market crash of 1929. The Great Depression was an important part of history as it serves as a guideline for investment practices that shouldn’t be used again.
- The Great Depression – A simple explanation of the causes and effects of the Great Depression.
- 1930s America – A comprehensive resource explaining the decade of the 1930s in America.
- Unemployment Issues During the Depression – A helpful article about how high unemployment affected the nation.
- Life During the Depression – An article about life during the depression
- Riding the Rails – PBS created a documentary about the lives of teenage homeless people who “rode the rails” during the depression era in America.
- Songs of the Great Depression – Depression-era songs were consistent with the feelings of hopelessness coupled with the desire to want to hope. This page contains three songs that were very popular during the depression.
- Great Depression Timeline – This is a timeline of the Great Depression.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) created what would be referred to as the “New Deal”. The “New Deal” consisted of heavy amounts of legislation and new programs to help relieve the effects of the Great Depression. One of the most notable achievements of the New Deal was the Public Works Administration (PWA) which employed 8.5 million people over the course of the depression. The PWA received criticism from some conservatives who stated that it “grew the federal government too much”. This same argument is still being used today. Regardless, the PWA was responsible for giving millions of Americans work during a time when businesses decided not to hire anyone.
There were other important New Deal programs of these include:
Civillian Conservation Corps (CCC) - was created in 1933 to employ young unskilled men aged 18-24 to revitalize, and reforest rural areas. The CCC helped plan nearly 3 billion trees, and constructed more than 800 trees.
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) was created under the authority of the Federal Reserve Act of 1933 to insure the deposits of approved banks against loss in the event of bank failure.
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was created in 1934 to license and regulate stock exchanges and to control public utility holding companies.
Social Security Board was created in 1935 to administer the federal old-age retirement funds.
Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) was created in 1933 to operate government- owned properties at Muscle Shoals, Ala.; to develop water and power resources of the Tennessee River watershed; to plan for the social and economic well-being of the valley.
Works for Progress Administration (WPA) was created in 1935 to relieve unemployment; later called Work Projects Administration. Abolished in 1942.
- New Deal Network – Further information about the Great Depression and the New Deal.
- New Deal Programs – A comprehensive list of all of the New Deal programs.
- FDR – This is a page all about FDR and his presidency from the official whitehouse.gov website.
- The New Deal – This is a brief overview of the New Deal.
- The Great Depression and the New Deal – A detailed overview of the Great Depression and the relief that FDR’s New Deal provided.
- New Deal Achievements – This page lists FDR’s achievements through the New Deal.
- FDIC - The official government web site for FDIC.
- SEC - The official government web site for the Securities and.
- Securites Exchange Act of 1934 - An analysis of the securities exchange act.
- Social Security Board (SSB) - History of the Social Security Administration.
- Social Security Administration - The official government web site for the social security administration.
- Tennesee Valley Authority (TVA) - The official government web site for the Tennesee Valley Authority.
- Works for Progress Administration (WPA) - A brief government overview of the WPA.
- Works Progress Administration - A resorceful page about the WPA including audio clips.
The New Deal helped relieve millions of unemployed Americans by giving them work as well as a new sense of security through new social safety nets. While it was not the solution to the problem, it was highly beneficial for America. In the end, WWII actually ended the Great Depression by creating new manufacturing jobs in the U.S. The Great Depression remains a legacy because it serves as a reminder that hardship can happen to anyone and that the U.S. is not immune to misfortune. It brought people closer together, reminded Americans of what was truly important, and enabled the West to prepare for a brighter future.
- Life During the Great Depression – A thought-provoking article about life for ordinary people during the depression.
- How the Depression Affected Children – The Great Depression had a profound effect on children.
- Farm Life During the Great Depression – This is a very helpful article about how farm life was during the depression-era.
- Depression-era Recipes – Simple recipes from the depression-era.