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The Great Depression

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FC: The Great Depression | The antidote to frustration is a calm faith, not in your own cleverness, or in hard toil, but in God's guidance. ~Norman Vincent Peale

1: Life was good before that October in 1929. Stock prices were through the roof, everything was in the green, and people were living in abundance. Then businesses began finding it hard to compete, hard to find a profit, and then someone was spooked in the stock market.

3: The Great Depression wasn't hard to foresee since there were overproduction in industry and agriculture, and there was an unequal distribution of wealth. There were war debts lingering, and high tariffs set; the tariffs passed was the reason behind why industry and agriculture became so high and in demand. People began playing the stock market to try and get some money together to pay for the increased prices of food, though they had no idea what they were doing. Borrowing money the didn't have, and investing it into a stock that could turn at any second, it's a wonder that the stock market didn't crash sooner. Pretty soon, people's stocks were going sour, but they had no money to begin with, so they couldn't pay back the banks.

4: Once someone became fearful in the stock market, it had a chain reaction, and soon everyone was pulling the plug and selling all of their stocks. Soon, businesses began going out because no one was buying any more stock, then the banks were questioned. In fear, the banks were stormed by customers demanding they get every last cent back.

5: Pretty soon the banks began closing, and many jobs were cut out to try and save money. People began searching anywhere and everywhere for food, for work, and for stability.

6: Hundreds of people were out of work, so they would travel whatever distance they had to in order to support their families.

8: As more and more people became unemployed, the need for food increased. Many restaurants and grocery stores would set up a food kitchen to help these people continue living. The lines would go for miles on end, but usually the store would run out of free food before everyone had a small bite.

9: There were limited supplies of food, so many families went without, all the while trying to find a place to work. | Those who couldn't make it to the food kitchens or the seemingly | endless amounts of people standing in line for scraps starved, and those who did make it have hardly anything to sustain them.

10: Life continued on, but it was a struggle. For 12 years people wouldn't be able to remember what it was | like to have a safe home, a steady job, not having to worry about if they were going to eat that night or if they | were to starve. But above all, they can't remember what it was like before they were forced to live in fear.

11: African Americans were hit extremely hard, and were the first to feel the brunt of the economy. They were the first people laid off, and they didn't get nearly as much aid as the other Americans. They were not accepted at the soup kitchens, and were suffering from unemployment rates 2 or 3 times more than what others were.

12: Immigrants were beginning to be rejected because America wasn't able to support it's own people. Various signs would be placed saying, "Mexicans keep going. We can't take care of our own."

13: Children weren't able to work, which meant that their very lives depended on the economy, because that would be how they could live to see the morning. | Because of having no work, families not only couldn't afford food or clothes, but they also couldn't pay the mortgage payments. Pretty soon, people began losing their homes left and right because the bank had to foreclose on them in an effort to keep the banks open. Unfortunately, the banks would also foreclose on farms, which meant absolutely no income for farmers. Many of the victims became nomads, and traveled the streets.

14: that their family depended on them, and they became humiliated if they had to ask someone else for help. | Men had more of a psychological hit than women did, because men believed (and at that time it was true)

15: Women began branching out for themselves, and started looking for work to try to feed their families. They began teaching and working in the school | systems, or also on the fields if they weren't foreclosed already. Finding any kind of way to make ends meet was the only goal that was imperative, and it no longer mattered how they got to that goal. One of the few good things that could ever be seen coming from the Great Depression would be that people became more aware of money and how it was spent, so that later when all this cleared up, they would begin to save.

16: As if America didn't have enough on it's hands, World War II breaks out, and instantly people are not only fearing for their lives, but also for their country and the soldiers sent out to battle. People thought for sure that this would just make the economy worse.

17: Miraculously, jobs begin opening up. The need for ammunition and weaponry created jobs that seemed to fall from thin air. People were being paid to be writers, artists, conservation workers and laborers. Factories reopened and new workers filed right in through the old doors. The need for more money was pushed so much that jobs were able to open right up. Soldiers were being trained, as well as pilots, so this made it easier on the families of these brave soldiers to save a little more money each time they got paid. After the war ended, the jobs continued and the economy went through the roof. The country was on it's way back to normal.

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  • By: Jacqueline W.
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  • Title: The Great Depression
  • The timeline of the Great Depression
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  • Published: almost 9 years ago