Chapter 23

Smoot-Harley Tariffs The Hawley-Smoot Tariff wast enacted in 1930. This treaty raised tariffs on many imported goods. Many American trading partners retaliated in response to this tariff. The Hawley-Smoot Tariff might have even worsened the Great Depression. ECONOMIC.
Reconstruction Finance Corporation RFC (Hoover Administration) (1932) Government agency whose purpose was to give federal loans to businesses such as banks, railroads, and other large corporations. While Hoover opposed direct “public relief” (welfare) to the American public because he thought it would kill American self-reliance, the RFC was intended to supply jobs to Americans by rescuing businesses in danger of bankruptcy. • In addition, the RFC provided money to local governments to pay for public work projects and local relief programs (welfare). This was Hoover’s main effort to combat the Depression. • Although the RFC went much further to intervene in the economy than any previous act or agency, the RFC lent money to large corporations who had some solvency rather than to small businesses that desperately needed aid. The more pressing issue was the RFC didn’t give out enough money to make a difference to the economical crisis (it only spent about 20% of the money available to it). • Hoover’s willingness to loan federal money to businesses while steadfastly refusing to give direct aid to unemployed Americans greatly contributed to his unpopularity.
Hoovervilles and Hoover blankets (Hoover Administration) (1930s) “Hooverville” was a name given to any shantytown during the period when Herbert Hoover was president. The term showed the unpopularity of Hoover and the fact that the American public blamed Hoover for the Depression.
The Bonus Army incident (Hoover Administration) (July 1932) The Bonus Army was a group of WWI veterans who demanded that the federal government pay them a promised bonus of $1000 (the bonus bill was passed in 1924) due in 1945. When Hoover refused because he was worried about balancing the budget, a group of 20,000 marched to Washington to present their cause in person. • Disregarding Hoover’s instructions, General Douglas MacArthur used excessive force to break up their encampment. Hoover was blamed for it and his popularity plummeted to an all time low.
Fireside chats During the depression years of the 1930s, President Roosevelt used the radio to communicate with the American people, using plain language to explain complex issues and programs. These had a reassuring and steadying effect on the public and boosted confidence.
Bank holiday FDR closes all American banks for 4 days (Congress meets to discuss legislation); Creates a great sense of relief for the public
Budget deficit The government is spending more than it’s receiving in taxes
Glass-Steagall Act This act forbade commercial banks from engaging in excessive speculation, added $1 billion in gold to economy and established the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
FDIC This entity provided insurance to personal banking accounts up to $5,000. These assured people that their money was safe and secure. This agency still functions today.
Agricultural Adjustment Act AAA This act restricted agricultural production in the New Deal era by paying farmers subsidies not to plant part of their land and to kill off excess livestock. Its purpose was to reduce crop surplus so as to effectively raise the value of crops. 2nd – Provided for price support to be mandatory on corn, cotton, and wheat, regulated supply and market demand
National Recovery Admin NRA Directed by Hugh John, this agency set up a system of codes of business practice, including giving fair wages and work hours. Businesses and labor unions who followed such codes could advertise as such (symbol: Blue Eagle) and thus gain more membership. Was limited in success.
Civilian Conservation Corps CCC employed about 3 million men (between 18-25) to work on projects that benefited the public, planting trees to reforest areas, building levees for flood control, and improving national parks, etc. Most pop form of legislation. Men only keep 20-25% of $, rest sent back to family.
Securities and Exchange Commission SEC Congressional commission created in 1934 to administer the Securites Act requiring full financial disclosure by companies wishing to sell stock, and to prevent the unfair manipulation of stock exchanges
NAM and Schechter Case Declared the National Recovery Administration (part of FDR’s New Deal) unconstitutional on the basis that the NRA gave the executive branch regulatory powers that belonged exclusively to Congress.
Huey Long [FULL NAME REQUIRED] Louisianna Senator who opposed FDR’s New Deal and came up with a “Share the Wealth” plan, which planned to give $5000 to all families. He was later assassinated.
Social Security Act The greatest victory for New Dealers; created pension and insurance for the old-aged, the blind, the physically handicapped, delinquent children, and other dependents by taxing employees and employers
Classical liberalism Philosophy that places the main point of emphasis on the individual. This philosophy is committed to the ideals of limited government, due process, liberty of the individual including freedom of the press, religion, speech, assembly, and free markets
Works Progress Administration WPA New Deal program that provided relief to the unemployed in fields such as theater, literature, entertainment, and art. One of the largest “alphabet” agencies.
1937 Recession temporary reversal of the pre-war 1933 to 1941 economic recovery, which occurred in 1937-38. It was part of the Great Depression in the United States, and had serious political results, and helped strengthen the new Conservative Coalition led by Senators Robert A. Taft and Richard B. Russell. Economic historians have not agreed on the causes, but many of the causes show that because the New Deal involved spending money from the Federal budget, President Roosevelt had to end New Deal spending, and thus programs, as a result. Depression suddenly intensifies
Keynesian Economics The idea of or relating to the economic theories of John Maynard Keynes, especially those theories advocating government monetary and fiscal programs designed to increase employment and stimulate business activity.
Eleanor Roosevelt [FULL NAME REQUIRED] FDR’s Wife and New Deal supporter. Was a great supporter of civil rights and opposed the Jim Crow laws. She also worked for birth control and better conditions for working women
The Scottsboro Boys The case of the Scottsboro Boys arose in Scottsboro, Alabama during the 1930s, when nine black youths, ranging in age from twelve to nineteen, were accused of raping two white women, Victoria Price and Ruby Bates, one of whom would later recant.
Indian Reorganization Act 1934, also known as the Wheeler-Howard Act or informally, the Indian New Deal, was a U.S. federal legislation which secured certain rights to Native Americans, including Natives. These include a reversal of the Dawes Act’s privatization of common holdings of American Indians and a return to local self-government on a tribal basis. The Act also restored to Native Americans the management of their assets (being mainly land) and included provisions intended to create a sound economic foundation for the inhabitants of Indian reservations. 7: 1934-1941
The Dust Bowl / Okies Hoover Administration) (1930s) “Okies” were poor farmers primarily from Oklahoma in the 1930s that moved west to California and Arizona or to the crowded cities. They left because following two generations of drought and poor farming much of the Great Plains were stricken by dust storms (the area was known as the “dust bowl”).
Grapes of Wrath (Writers/ Literature) (1939) Steinbeck’s most famous novel tells the story of the Joad family, migrants from the Dust Bowl to California, and the trials and tribulations the family encounters. Steinbeck offered a blistering portrait of migrant workers’ lives in the West, but also depicted the endurance of the common people.
Dorothea Lange (Writers/ Literature) (1930s) Both of these photographers produced memorable portraits of people of the Depression that decades later are still recognized as indelible images of the Depression.
Tennessee Valley Authority TVA It built a hydroelectric network that supplied cheap power while also developing a flood-control system, recreational facilities, and soil conservation program. First federal business to compete with private enterprises.

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