Ten Interesting Facts . . . .
The Great Depression
Black TuesdayOn October 29, 1929, the stock market lost $14 billion. During the week of Black Tuesday, the stock market lost $30 billion. This would be equivalent to $377,587,032,770.41 today.
PhotosDorothea Lange’s photo of Florence Thompson with several of her children has become a moving symbol of the Great Depression.In the photo, Florence Thompson was age 32 years old. She had seven children. Florence was a migrant pea picker in California. This photo was taken in February or March of 1936 in Nipomo, California.
Average Rate of Unemployment during the Great Depression
The board game Monopoly became a big success when it first went on the market in 1935. Players could pretend to be rich. This was a nice break from the reality of the depression.
As money became scarce, gangsters began to surface. Some infamous gangsters of the 1930’s included:
- John Dillinger
- “Baby Face” Nelson
- Machine Gun Kelly
- Pretty Boy Floyd
- Ma Barker and her Boys
- Bonnie and Clyde
Going to the movies was a favorite pastime during the Great Depression.
Approximately 60 to 80 million Americans went to the movies weekly. Hit movies included:
- Tom Sawyer (1930)
- Frankenstein (1931)
- King Kong (1933)
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
- The Wizard of Oz (1939)
- Gone with the Wind (1939)
- Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
Average Wages during the 1930’s
|Public School Teacher||$1455/year|
|Health Services Worker||$933/year|
Cutting CostsBecause buttons were too expensive, Americans began using zippers during the Great Depression.
Roosevelt’s New DealFranklin Delano Roosevelt promised a “New Deal for the American People” when he became President in 1933. He established a number of federal organizations such as TVA, NRA, CCC, and WPA to get people back to work.
Price of Goods
Product Price in the 1920s Price in the 1930s Price in the 1940s Prince in the 1950s Butter (Pound) $ .70 $ .46 $ .42 $ .74 Eggs (Dozen) $ .78 $ .52 $ .45 $ .67 Rice (Pound) $ .17 $ .09 $ .08 $ .17 Washing Machine (Electrical) $ 85.00 $ 74.50 $ 48.00 $ 65.00 Bicycle $ 43.00 $ 32.00 $29.00 $45.00