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menuAmerican Social History Project  ·    Center for Media and Learning

  • Historical Eras > Great Depression and World War II (1929-1945) (x)
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We found 30 items that match your search

An African-American Man Protests Labor Discrimination at Bowman Dairy

In 1937, African-American activists in Chicago founded the Negro Labor Relations League to put pressure on companies that refused to hire black workers. The League's campaigns targeted newspapers (to promote black newscarriers), movie theaters (to [...]

Women Workers Protest the Loss of Jobs at Ford Motor Co.

When World War II ended, Ford Motor Company's Highland Park plant, like industrial manufacturers across the country, laid off thousands of women workers and replaced them with inexperienced men. In Highland Park, women members of the United Auto [...]

"Boys Hopping Freight"

During the Great Depression an estimated 250,000 youths left home to search for work, to ease the burden on their families, to escape an abusive home life, or to find adventure. Opportunities for work were rare and never long-term, and most young [...]

Unemployed Single Women Demonstrate for Jobs

As millions of men lost their jobs during the Great Depression, many began to argue that women (particularly married women) should not be occupying the scarce jobs that remained. When women could find jobs, employers routinely paid them less than [...]

CCC Boys Serve a Meal in California

The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was established in 1933 and provided temporary work for three million young men, who lived in military-style camps, constructed recreation facilities, and carried out conservation projects under the direction of [...]

African-American CCCers Practice Radio Communications

In this 1933 photograph, young men study radio operations at a Civilian Conservation Corps camp for African-American men in Kane, Pennsylvania. After work hours, enrollees were encouraged to take educational and vocational classes that might help [...]

"Boys At Work, Prince George's County, Maryland"

This photograph is part of a series of iconic images of the Civilian Conservation Corps taken at an "experimental farm" in Beltsville, Maryland. The photographer, Carl Mydans (1907-2004), worked for the Farm Security Administration and, in 1936, [...]

Boys Line Up for Morning Inspection in CCC Barracks

This 1940 photograph was taken at a camp in Nebraska National Forest, near Halsey, Nebraska. Camp officers routinely inspected barracks in order to promote good hygiene and discipline among CCC enrollees. The typical day in the camp began with [...]

"Bachelor Shacks in Outskirts of Patterson"

The unemployment rate soared in the U.S. during the Great Depression (peaking at 25% in 1933), while wages for those who still had jobs fell sharply. Many people, employed and unemployed, fell behind on their rent or mortgage payments and lost their [...]

"Part of the daily lineup outside the State Employment Service Office. Memphis, Tennessee"

African Americans were poor to begin with, but the Great Depression made their plight worse. They tended to work in industries most affected y the economic downturn, and in such dire circumstances white workers often took even the difficult, [...]