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US History Honors December 22nd, 2012
Chapter 13, Sections 1 & 2 Textbook Notes Section 1: The Crash and Its Aftermath October 24th, 1929: New York Stock Exchange Crashes ($30 billion in stock value lost). o Stocks: Shares in business ownership whose price and value constantly fluctuate. Speculation: A way of gambling with short-term investments. Buying on margin: Paying only a fraction of a stock’s dollar value, borrowing the rest from a stockbroker. o The stock itself was the collateral. December 1929: Andrew Mellon, Secretary of the Treasury: “I see nothing in the present situation that is either menacing or warrants pessimism.” Depression: A period of severely reduced economic activity. o Unemployment: A characteristic of depression, where people lose their jobs and are unable to find new ones. 1930s: The Great Depression, its causes: o o o o o o Depressed farms and industries underconsumption/overproduction. Growing gap between rich and poor reduced consumer buying power. Federal Reserve System regulated money in circulation, preventing economy to bounce back up. Decline in foreign trade due to high tariffs (to promote American goods). May 1930: “We have now passed the worst and… shall rapidly recover.” Agricultural Marketing Act, passed by Congress before stock market crash. Farm Board established, lent money to cooperative marketing associations of farmers. However, could not lend to individuals, causing thousands of families to go bankrupt. 1929 to 1932: Unemployment rises from 5% 25%. E.Y. (Yip) Harburg, song lyricist: “Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?” February 1932: Reconstruction Finance Corporation (RFC) authorized to loan $2 billion to faltering banks, insurance companies, and railroads. o July 1932: Emergency Relief Act: RFC to distribute $300 million in loans to state governments for the unemployed. 1928: Herbert C. Hoover, the Great Engineer, elected president.
US History Honors December 22nd, 2012
The bonus army: War veterans from WWI to collect their promised bonus for serving in the war by 1945. o “No panhandling, no drinking, and no radicalism.” Disciplined non-violent protest group.
July 28 , 2012: Hoover sends military (tanks, machine-guns, etc.) led by Douglas MacArthur and Dwight D. Eisenhower to disperse the bonus army. o “What a pitiful spectacle is that of the great American Government, mightiest in the world, chasing unarmed men, women, and children with Army tanks.”
The Election of 1932: Franklin D. Roosevelt wins against Hoover by a landslide.
Section 2: The Dream on Hold April 14th, 1935: Dust Storm Socks Meade County, Kansas. Foreclosure: Bank would take control of unpaid farm, sell the property. o Penny auctions: Staged sales of property for pennies to friends, who simply returned it to the owner later. The Okies: Great Plains farmers leaving for the west (California) in hopes of finding jobs. o o Exploited by farm land owners, who lowered wages for those willing to work. Met with police force, as they were viewed as “dirty, ignorant outsiders.”
Tenant farmers: Worked and lived on the land, however, many lost their jobs as they were replaced by tractors and cultivators. 1931 to 1934: 12,000 Mexicans (many were American citizens) sent back to Mexico. o o Repatriation: Return to a former homeland. Families would move in with relatives (15 people in 3 persons apartment). By 1933: One of every four people was out of work. Hoovervilles: Makeshift cities that sprang up on the fringes of metropolitan areas. J. Paul Getty: Bought up oil companies at bargain prices during 1930s, became one of the richest men in the world. Women revived traditional home crafts, and many job opportunities remained open to women (i.e. clerical work and retail sales). Hoboes: Hitchhikers across the country on freight trains in search of work. o Many unsuccessful, abandons families and lived together in hobo camps.