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The Great Depression Essay

2015 words - 8 pages

Calderwood 1The Great DepressionDepression, what does this word mean, not by dictionary but by our hearts? It can mean many things, most of them being feeling words. Such as sad, alone, hopeless, and even suicidal. The Great depression was the most significantly horrifying economic crash in the history of America. Everything hit rock bottom, including the stock market, banks and the most saddening of them all was peoples moral. The Depression hit America hard and fast, it lasted about ten years from 1929 to 1940.Beginning this tragic era of time was the famous stock market crash also known as black Tuesday. In the 1920's stock prices jumped a tremendous amount, to highs never seen before. Many people such as investors believed that stocks were a for sure thing. So they started borrowing heavily which would enable them to invest more money into the stock market. That was all about to end, for in 1929 the bubble was popped and stocks started to go down very quickly. By 1933 the market had reached its lowest point ever, down a total of 80%. This hid the American economy hard; the strong demand for goods, such as major appliances went down, no more money to invest. The stock market had let many people down. ("Stock market crash." The first measured century. 11-07-04. http://www.pbs.org/fmc/timeline/estockmarketcrash.htm.)The stock market wasn't the only thing to go down. Banks played a major role with the stock market; they were almost hand in hand. Because people had to borrow money and get credit from the banks to invest in the market. So as the market began to crash, banks went erupt. No business, people started taking their money out of savings accounts. Nine million bankCalderwood 2accounts were wiped out. The banks began to run out of money, so people never saw their money; by 1933 many banks across America were shut down and the doors locked for good.The Great Depression, much like any other famous tragedy in America, was a chain reaction. After the stock market crashed and banks went bankrupt; unemployment hit Americans. By the year of 1932 thirteen million people had no work. In the year of 1933 unemployment ranged from thirteen to sixteen million people with no jobs. That means that, one forth of America had no regular income. In just one week 100,000 workers were fired, some laid off with the hopes to be back soon, but many were just fired. This was also a time of racisms, colored people mainly just African Americans were fired before white people. The statistics were, fifty-six percent of colored people with no work and only thirty-nine percent of whites with no work. That is a seventeen percent difference, all because of the color of skin you have. Some business and companies could afford to stay open. All the small mom and pop places were shut down. Major factories such as industrial jobs and brick layers were the only ones who had a big chance of staying open. By staying open their works took a pay cut, down to twenty-two dollars a...

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