The Great Depression Experiences of Urban Americans

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Financial panic by U.S. residents in urban areas
Money began to retreat from the economy after the Great Depression. As there was a world stock crash, fear forced investors to pull their money out from banks, stock exchanges, and ultimately from economic circulation. This lead to the significant collapse of many banks, many of which were unsuccessful. (922 Shi)
Insecurity and Theft
As President Roosevelt came to office, he saw the Street Wall had to be controlled when there was no regulatory regulation prior to the 1929 stock market crash. Therefore, Roosevelt and his team crafted laws that would not only protect people from fraud and violence, but also control the activities of the the stock market (Shi 923).
Drought that Led to Immigration
During this time when the agricultural sector was hit with a hard challenge, drought also emerged as an ecological catastrophe that was known as dust bowl. The states that were hit hard included Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas. Crops withered, and farmers’ income was decreased at unimaginable rates. As this happened, perched farmers could not pay their debts and banks closed their family farms. People migrated from south and Midwest to California where, as it was said, there were jobs in plenty (Shi 928).

The Hard Pressed Women
When these women hardly met life conditions. For example, pretty girls who migrated from the rural areas are favored to find jobs in the stores as peasants were just left out (Le Sueur 5). When these women realized that they couldn’t achieve their dreams and all what they had had was gone, they went to work for their fellow women who had been once married. In return, they were given a bed to sleep on which they had to do a great deal of work (Le Sueur 5)
Experiences of Rural Americans on the Great Depression
Depressed Prices of Agricultural Products
When President Roosevelt assumed the power, one of his immediate actions was to rescue farmers from cruising debts and lower their mortgage payments to avoid bankruptcy. He was the initiator of the Agricultural Administration Act, which created an agency called Agricultural Adjustment Administration (Shi 928). The role of this agency was to ensure that prices for crops are raised.
Unemployment and Homelessness
There was an urgent need to relieve widespread human distress as many people lost their jobs and became homeless. President Roosevelt and his team pushed hard through a series of programs that created a welfare state or were aimed at improving the living standards. He did not consider giving money to the citizens of America, but believed in providing employment through creation of jobs (Shi 923)
Tent as home, Mid

Figure 1
Source: Dorothea Lange. Migrant Farm Families: Photos with original captions.
This is an image of refugees on their way to California during their mod travel journey. These migrants had to go for dome time without proper housing.
Waiting for work, Left

Figure 2
Source: Dorothea Lange. Migrant Farm Families: Photos with original captions.
This is an image of a refugee waiting for work, namely for the opening of Orange picking season in Porterville.

Works Cited
Dorothea Lange. Migrant Farm Families: Photos with original captions.
Meridel Le Sueur. Women on the Breadlines. 1932. New Masses, pdf.
Shi. The Great Depression 1929-1939.pdf

July 24, 2021


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