hist112depression

hist112depression - The Great Depression I. Election of...

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Unformatted text preview: The Great Depression I. Election of Herbert Hoover II. The Crash of 1929 III. Causes and Impact of Great Depression IV. Government Response Hoover and the “Bonus Army” V. Election of FDR, 1932 Exam: 1 week from today. 25 multiple choice 2 pts/each; 1 essay (50 pts). Discussion Sections on Growing Up. Bring essay & book to section. 1 Min Questionnaire: Section 9 One of the following questions will be selected for the essay portion of One the examination. (These will be posted on blackboard by the end of the day.) day.) 1.During the first decades of the twentieth century many Americans called themselves Progressive reformers. What did they mean when they gave themselves the label "Progressive"? Describe the activities of some self­described Progressives. Explain and assess the achievements of the Progressive movement. What, if any, were the limitations of the Progressive movement? Finally, when would you say the Progressive movement ended and why? 2. What effects did the Great Depression and New Deal have on ordinary Americans? Using examples from Russell Baker’s family and acquaintances mentioned in Growing Up describe the effects the Depression had and some of the responses to it. Similarly, describe the impact of the New Deal on Russell Baker himself, his family and his acquaintances? 3. The 1890s are often described as a turbulent decade. Describe the major events and developments of the decade and explain how they transformed the United States. How, in other words, did the United States change between 1890 and 1900, and how did those changes foreshadow new patterns in the United States? 4. Compare and contrast the origins and impact of the Spanish American War and World War I on the United States. Describe how America got involved in both wars and what impact these wars had on American foreign policy and on life in America itself. In your view, which of these two wars had the most significant impact on the United States? Why? The Great Depression One of the key turning points in American history. People who lived through it, like Russell Baker, often used phrases like “ever since `29” or “before the crash.” 1928 election of Herbert Hoover (R): 23 1928 million to 16 million for Al Smith (D), the first Catholic candidate. Catholic GOP slogan: “A chicken in every GOP pot and a car in every garage” pot Hoover’s nomination speech: “We in Hoover’s America today are nearer the final triumph over poverty than ever before in the history of any land.” the Signs of Trouble The economy was already slowing when Hoover took office in March 1929. Consumers slowed down their purchases but Hoover said nothing for fear of setting off a panic. The Crash of 1929 The Black Thursday­October 24 (Tuesday the 29th continued the trend). Dow Jones average from 381 in Sept, 1929 to 41 in mid­1932, an 89% drop. Long-term Stock Decline Unemployment reached crisis Unemployment levels levels 4 million by December 1929 12 million by 1932 15 million by 1933 Unemployment Unemployment Hoovervilles Breadlines Run on banks Huge impact on economy The Depression's impact on the economy Banks in operation: 25,568 (1929); 14,771 (1933) In these four years: GDP fell 29% Construction ­79% Manufacturing –54% Investments –98% In the summer of 1932, the steel industry was operating at 12% of capacity. Consumer spending (in billions) on Consumer selected items, 1929-33 Food Housing Clothing Automobiles Medical care Philanthropy Value of shares on the NYSE 1929 1933 89.0 19.0 19.5 11.5 11.5 7.5 11.2 5.4 2.6 0.8 2.9 1.9 1.2 0.8 Why the Depression Came Stock market crash was not the main cause. Underconsumption/overproduction Income Inequality Poorest 40% got only 12% of income. Top 5% got 33% of income Speculative Boom of the 1920s Even though industry was reaching capacity, investors and businesses continued to build new factories, equipment, etc. As the rate of profit decreased, some investors turned to risky, high­profit ventures, such as the Florida land boom. Negative GDP, 1929-1933 Farmers and the Dust Bowl Between 1920 and 1930 the total number of farms declined for the first time in U.S. history John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath A poor “Okie” An Okie Family African American agricultural African workers workers Isolation and Humiliation: note Isolation scenes of this sort in Growing Up Growing Contrast between `American Contrast Dream’ and reality Dream’ Government Response The Hoover administration seemed heartless to many Americans. Sec. of Treasury Mellon: crisis “not altogether a bad thing. People will work harder, live a more moral life, adjust their values.” Mellon was extremely rich. Hoover was tone-deaf to the depiction of himself Hoover as being heartless: “many persons left their jobs for the more profitable one of selling apples.” for The Bonus Army, 1932 The “Bonus Army”: 20,000 camp in The Washington DC Washington Violent Government Response Election of 1932: Roosevelt Election promises a “New Deal” promises Election of 1932 FDR’s personality and style ...
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This note was uploaded on 06/13/2011 for the course HIST 112 taught by Professor Littlefield during the Spring '08 term at South Carolina.

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