The Great Depression affected millions of people. No one could escape its severity. It grasped onto America and refused to release its hold. Some of the most influential men in America tried to relinquish some of its asperity but to no avail. America was sunk in an economic crisis that would cost billions of dollars and many lives. The Great Depression was a time of large economic struggle for America and although other attempts were made, the true cause for its end was America’s entrance into World War II.
The Great Depression was a time of little hope in the United States. It affected all kinds of people from farmers to the average businessman. It all started on what is referred to as ‘Black Tuesday.’ October 29th, 1929 was one of the most influential days in the History of the American economy. Buying on Margin was a trend developed in the late twenties when the citizens of America could not afford to invest in stocks but yet saw a reward in buying them anyway. Due to buying on margin, 8.5 billion dollars were loaned to the American people, which was more than the amount of currency in circulation. 16 million shares were traded on Black Tuesday and the stock market completely crashed. Large corporation owners and wealthy investors tried to fix the dilemma by buying large pieces of stock but the market had officially crashed and the American people had lost 14 billion dollars in that single day and that value would only increase until November 13th when the market reached its all time low (Nishi, 2001).
As the Great Depression grew in severity, America needed a new leader. They needed someone who would guide them to a path of renewal and relief. That leader was elected in 1932 and his name was Franklin D. Roosevelt. Born January 30, 1882, Roosevelt was destined for greatness. He grew up to be a lawyer and later, the thirty-second President of the United States of America. Within his first 100 days in office, Roosevelt launched a new set of social reforms that he called “The New Deal” (Nishi, 2001). The New Deal included The Three R’s: relief, recovery and reform.
The relief was focused towards unemployed Americans that were suffering through the Great Depression. There were a series of relief plans to employ the millions of unemployed Americans such as The Civilian Conservation Corps and the Works Progress Administration. The WPA and the CCC were both used to construct parks, hospitals, and roads. This bettered America and helped its citizens to get back on their feet. He also added in the social security act which was a law that gave economic support for those who could not provide it for themselves. This affected the elderly and retired over the age of sixty-two, the unemployed, the disabled and single mothers (Nishi, 2001). As the relief acts focused on the present situation, the recovery acts were created to help the Americans to recover smoothly from economic crisis in the future.
Roosevelt developed the recovery plans to help the...