THE GREAT DEPRESSION

Deep discontent, which has been brought on by the worst economic depression in the history of the United States, swept Roosevelt onto presidency. During his campaign he pledged himself not only to lift the country of depression, but also to get up economic safeguards in an effort to prevent future depressions in the United States. The depression had steadily grown worse, between twelve and fifteen million industrial workers had lost their jobs. The sharp fall in prices of farm products had brought many persons to a state of poverty. Millions of farmers and city workers had lost their homes and more were about to lose them, because they had no money to pay their taxes and interest on their mortgage. The Great Depression was not solely a result of economic practices. The Great Depression took a momentum of its own. Individuals with mortgages on their homes, who bought cars and other goods on credit and who had purchased stocks on margins lost it. They stopped purchasing luxurious items such as radios causing them to close down plants or run them only part-time. Thousands of workers were laid off as orders were canceled for copper, wood cabinets, and glass radio tubes. Because of this jobless workers could not meet mortgage payments or repay loans they lost their property. Banks that lent them money failed, wiping out Roosevelt went into action swiftly and vigorously. His first official act declared a “banking Holiday” until treasury officials could examine all banks. The banks that found to be in good financial condition would be supplied with all the money they needed and would be allowed to reopen for business. Those found to be doubtful would be kept closed until they had been put on a sound basis. Those found to be without sufficient funds for operation would not reopen at all. The action ended the banking crisis. Everyone knew that if bank doors were open to all, it passed the test and was …

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