USA Crash and Depression

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  • Created by: naomih
  • Created on: 28-04-13 04:34

Wall Street Crash

1929, 29 October Tuesday

- Overproduction not enough people to buy

- Trade difficulties overseas not afford high tariffs + war loans

- Speculation buying 'on the margin' no afford to pay banks if prices fall

- Summer of 1929, 20 million shareholders

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How crash led to Depression

In cities: factories could not sell, not enough buyers

    : could not sell abroad, high tariffs

    : cut wages+production

    : cut work force --> DEPRESSION

countryside: produced too much food, prices fell

  : less money, so grow more goo to make more money

  : prices fell lower, could not pay debts/mortgages

  : Banks took over farms --> DEPRESSION

Downtown NY: Share $ >, banks lost investing in customers, so called outstanding loans

       : lost confidence, took money out (109,371 businesses failed)

       : factories closed, high unemployment (14 million by 1933) -> DEPRESSION

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Effects of Depression

Unemployment: car production cut by 80%, road+build construction fell 92%

: hourly wage fell 59cents (1926) -> 44cents (1933)

: 1929 (1.6 million unemployed) 1933 (14 million unemployed)


Local government: not able to support, not money income was cut

Private charities/individuals: e.g. Al Capone provided soup kitchen in Chicago

Self help: stealing unharvested crops, In Seattle they were allowed

Setting up communities: e.g. shanty towns/hoovervilles


rich remained rich e.g. John D. Rockerfeller (multi-millionaire) held wealth in assets+gold

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People in the countryside


- between 1930 to 1936 South and Midwest suffered serious drought

- by 1930 most land had been overfarmed and losing its fertility, little rainfall

- by 1936, over 20 million hectares of land became like deserts


- left the land to California from (e.g. New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Colorado)

- Steinbeck's novel 'The Grapes of Wrath' tells the story of family traveling to Cali.

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Documentary Photographs and Hollywood

- Most powerful images of America.

- Farm Security Admin. (FSA) set up a photographic unit to record

- most famous photographers: Dorothea Lange, Walker Evans

Golden age of Hollywood were 1930s

- Throughout depression 60-100 million people went to cinema every week

- Movie Magazines sold encourages public's worship of movie stars e.g.Screen Book

- Busby Berkeley musical e.g. Footlight Parade

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Why Franklin D. Roosevelt elected president in 193


- promised th great 'turnaround', business would overcome depression if left alone

- Americans blamed Hoover, felt he was not doing anything to help

- believed relief should be provided by private charities+local gov. too much help would      damage the spirit of self-reliance

- his attitude made people think he was cold and uncaring


-Promised: gov. schemes for more jobs, revive industry+agriculture, relief for     poor+unemployed, protection for workers

- promising to get rid of prohibition

- public speaker, travelled around the country talking to people

- having suffered and overcome fearful blows, qualified to help American people

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