Boom to Bust Visual Essay By: Paulina Kaczmarczyk

During the time of the Great Depression, people had difficulty with different aspects of society including Economy, Homelife, Leisure Time and Role of Government. The two groups that were affected by these aspects of society were the African Americans and Farmers.

Economy during the 1920's

Towards the end of the 1920's, some workers were unemployed and others worked all day in manufacturing factories to earn more money. In the right hand picture, a women and her children are worried, and they had no home during this Great Depression Era.

Changes in the Economy

The chart on the left hand shows how the bank failures increased from the 1920's to the 1930's ever since the Great Depression came. The graph on the right hand shows how the price changes from the beginning of the 1920's to the 1930's. In the beginning, the price decreased a lot and then stayed the same.

The Economy for African Americans

African Americans were having trouble and they were searching for jobs, since white men were taking over theirs. There were racial tensions all throughout the 1920's and 30's. They got less financial aid than whites even when FDR became president.

The Economy had its ups and downs, until it came to the Great Depression. In the 1920’s, African Americans had lots of success in business and owners paid them a lot. However towards the 1930’s, African Americans were unemployed, banks shut down and white men were taking over the black businesses. Even when FDR became president, he barely helped the African Americans and actually gave them less financial aid.

The Economy for Farmers

During the Great Depression and Dust Bowl, farmers lost everything. All the crops were ruined and the farmland was destroyed. The farmers had no money as well, since they invested in market stocks.

In the beginning of the 1920’s, farmers invested in market stocks and their businesses grew. On the other hand,at the beginning of the 1930’s, the government foreclosed some farms and other ones got severe droughts during the Great Depression. All farmers were devastated that they had lost their crops. In addition to that, farmers were overproducing throughout both years.

Homelife on the streets

People were homeless during the Great Depression and many of them, like the man above in the picture, lost all their money. They are now trying to make a living by selling apples or other things to get money.

Daily lives at home

During the 1920's, women worked all day at home either doing the laundry, washing the dishes, taking care of their children and much more. In the 1930's, there were more appliances invented and women got to "cut corners" like sewing clothes and using laundry machines.

African Americans Homelife

African Americans had the most trouble during the Great Depression and many of them lost their homes. The government gave them the least financial aid and many white men took over the manufacturing businesses, so African Americans couldn't receive any money.

Throughout the 1920’s, African Americans were having trouble adjusting to their homelife because they were moving from rural areas to city areas looking for jobs. Women were working at home, while the men went to work. Leading into the 1930’s, there was an increase of the presence of African Americans in the northern cities and racial tensions. Middle class African Americans were still losing jobs and struggling to find money.

Farmers Homelife

Farmers were lucky to have their crops to eat, until the Dust Bowl came and took their homes and farmland away. Many farmers didn't have homes because they couldn't afford them when the Great Depression hit.

In the 1920’s and the 1930’s, many farmers were being foreclosed by the government because they spent all their money on the crops.They lost their homes with the farms and held onto the things they had. Families were horrified since they didn’t know what to do and where to go, except for the Hoovervilles. Many farmers with their families had moved to these towns until they would get their money back.

Leisure Times

Many people had leisure time even when the biggest tragedies happened. They went to the movies either with their families or alone and even maybe go on Sunday drives.

Dancing your troubles away

In the 1920's and 30's, people wanted to escape from their daily struggles and in order to do this, they went dancing in speakeasies or clubs. They danced and enjoyed the music while it lasted.

Harlem Renaissance

During the Harlem Renaissance in the 1920's, African Americans used to escape their worries and play jazz music or dance, but some of them even started bands. Jazz was the biggest symbol of black freedom.

Leisure times were the best to have whenever people wanted to escape their daily struggles. The Harlem Renaissance was one of those leisure times and it definitely brought light to the African Americans, but it only lasted a short period of time. African Americans would dance their worries away and some would even start bands which would continue through the 1920’s. Jazz music was a sign of black freedom. In order to have leisure time, some inventors designed washing machines and dishwashers, that let women have more free time.

No Freedom for Farmers

Farmers had no leisure time and worked all day and every day, except part time on Sunday's. On Sunday's they usually went to church with their families and the only other time they could really have fun was go out with some friends.

Farmers barely got any leisure time since they worked all day and every day on the farm. The only times they actually got off of work was either to go to church or meet up with some friends. During these times, there was less time to do anything for yourself and more work.

The Election of Presidents

People had a hard time choosing the right president, one that will help fix everything that was damaged after the Great Depression and Dust Bowl. FDR was elected and promised the townspeople that he will set New Deal policies. These policies would restore faith and they would change how people look at the government, in needs of help.

Fireside Chats with FDR

The role of government was to protect and comfort people in difficult situations, and that's what FDR did. People would gather around a radio and listen to the comforting words that FDR states on what he's going to do to help fix the damaged town.

The Role of Government towards African Americans

African Americans were the ones who supported the government the most and yet they barely got affected by the New Deal policies. They received the least financial aid and could barely find a job, since white men were working in those manufacturing businesses.

The governments affect on farmers

The New Deal had somewhat of an affect on farmers since the government passed the AAA Act which let the farmers stop overproducing their products. In addition to that the government also hired the CCC team of teenage boys that helped in disaster relief and planting trees at the farms.

The Role of Government was very important in the economy. FDR was the president that helped the townspeople get through the Great Depression. He made people stop worrying, whether it would be families, African Americans, or farmers. He started fireside chats where everyone would gather and he would speak from the heart trying to comfort everyone and make them feel like there is still hope in the economy. One thing the government did for farmers was put up the AAA Act that stopped overproduction and limited products. The government tried to get everyone jobs and the New Deal policy helped many people.

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