Chapter 22 Living in Hard Times
Coming of the Great Depression
The Great Depression was sparked by the stock market crash of 1929, and a speculative
boom in stock prices was certainly one cause of the depression. Volatility in the stock
market, however, was not the only cause of the economic hard times of the 1930s.
Complete the table below to identify the key factors contributing to the crash of the
United States economy in 1929. Be sure to note the consequence of each factor you
(Farms and Corporations)
Unemployment and Poverty
Eventually the dealing of goods decreases. As it
decrease the prices fell also. Farms and Companies lost
profit with the decrease of trade. Many farms ad
companies were forced to shut down. Many people lost
their jobs and unemployment rates quickly increased.
Investing in stock was a way for Americans to increase
their wealth. Many people started rushing toward this.
With no money to invest themselves many went and
borrowed money to invest. No one ever expected the
stock market crash that was soon to follow. Millions lost
life savings, even the brokers lost a lot of money. With
this new crash, Wall Street was in full effect.
With the Crash plus lack of trade and production, profits
were disappearing and the banks could hardly survive.
They were unable to secure money that was loaned out.
The money was almost worthless. “Bank holidays”
prevented people from withdrawing any money. War
veterans were unhappy and decided to protest for not
getting paid for their services.
As the wealthy continued to become wealthier and poor
got poorer, the amount of people who reached the
poverty line increased tremendously. Living conditions
became worse; people became homeless and families
had to begin to build their own shelters. Some of these
shelters (shacks, boxes, tents, etc.) were sarcastically
named “Shantytowns” after Hoover and became very
common in cities.
President Hoover attempted to impose voluntary action
to stabilize the state of the economy, but failed. The
Smoot-Hawley Act and Trade was designed to raise
tariffs on imported goods in order to protect industries
and farms, but instead, other countries increased their
tariffs as well which led to a devastating decrease in
C 22 Roots of War Timeline
The impact of the Great Depression was not limited to economic issues. It also helped
touch off dramatic political development in many parts of the world, developments that
would eventually lead to another global war. Create a timeline of the 1920s and 1930s
marking key events in the march toward World War II.
1920 1921 1922 1923 1924 1925
1926 1927 1928 1929 1930