Exam preparation materials


Rapid Review Guide

To achieve the perfect 5, you should be able to explain the following:

• The Great Depression had numerous long-lasting effects on American society.

• Franklin Roosevelt was the first activist president of the twentieth century who used the power of the federal government to help those who could not help themselves.

• The Great Depression’s origins lay in economic problems of the late 1920s.

• The 1929 stock market crash was caused by, among others things, speculation on the part of investors and buying stocks “on the margin.”

• The stock market crash began to affect the economy almost immediately, and its effects were felt by almost all by 1931.

• Herbert Hoover did act to end the Depression, but believed that voluntary actions by both business and labor would lead America out of its economic difficulties.

• Franklin Roosevelt won the 1932 election by promising “The New Deal” to the American people and by promising to act in a decisive manner.

• Suffering was felt across American society; many in the Dust Bowl were forced to leave their farms.

• During the first hundred days, Roosevelt restored confidence in the banks, established the Civilian Conservation Corps, stabilized farm prices, and attempted to stabilize industry through the National Industrial Recovery Act.

• During the Second New Deal, the WPA was created and the Social Security Act was enacted; this was the most long-lasting piece of legislation from the New Deal.

• Roosevelt was able to craft a political coalition of urban whites. Southerners, union members, and blacks that kept the Democratic party in power through the 1980s.

• The New Deal had opponents from the left who said it didn’t do enough to alleviate the effects of the Depression and opponents from the right who said that the New Deal was socialist in nature.

• Roosevelt’s 1937 plan to pack the Supreme Court and the recession of 1937 demonstrated that New Deal programs were not entirely successful in ending the Great Depression.

• Many Americans turned to radio and the movies for relief during the Depression.

Time Line

1929: Stock market crash

1930: Hawley-Smoot Tariff enacted

1931: Ford plants in Detroit shut down

Initial trial of the Scottsboro Boys

1932: Glass-Steagall Banking Act enacted

Bonus marchers routed from Washington

Franklin D. Roosevelt elected president

Huey Long announces “Share Our Wealth” movement

1933: Emergency Banking Relief Act enacted

Prohibition ends

Agricultural Adjustment Act enacted

National Industrial Recovery Act enacted

Civilian Conservation Corps established

Tennessee Valley Authority formed

Public Works Administration established

1934: American unemployment reaches highest point

1935: Beginning of the Second New Deal

Works Progress Administration established

Social Security Act enacted

Wagner Act enacted

Formation of Committee for Industrial Organization (CIO)

1936: Franklin Roosevelt reelected

Sit-down strike against CM begins

1937: Recession of 1937 begins

Roosevelt’s plan to expand the Supreme Court defeated

1939: Gone with the Wind published

The Grapes of Wrath published

Review Questions

1. Which of the following was not a cause of the stock market crash?

A. Excessive American loans to European countries

B. Uneven division of wealth

C. Installment buying

D. Drop in farm prices

E. Purchasing of stocks “on the margin”

(Correct Answer: A. All of the others were major underlying reasons for the crash. Americans loans to Europe benefited both European countries and American banking houses until the crash.)

2. Wealthy businessmen who objected to the New Deal programs of Franklin Roosevelt claimed that

A. they unfairly aided the many who did not deserve it

B. Roosevelt was personally a traitor to his class

C. New Deal programs smacked of “Bolshevism”

D. New Deal programs unfairly regulated businesses

E. All of the above

(Correct Answer: E. All of the criticisms listed were heard throughout the 1930s.)

3. The purpose of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) was to

A. ensure that poor Americans had something to fall back on when they retired

B. inspect the financial transactions of important businesses

C. insure bank deposits of individual citizens

D. ensure that businesses were established insurance funds for their workers, as mandated by congressional legislation

E. increase governmental control over the economy

(Correct Answer: C. The FDIC was established after the bank holiday to insure individual accounts in certified banks and to increase confidence in the banking system. Americans began to put money back into banks after its institution.)

4. One group of women who were able to keep their jobs during the Great Depression were

A. schoolteachers

B. clerical workers

C. domestic workers

D. government employees

E. professional workers

(Correct Answer: C. In the other occupations women were oftentimes fired before men, or had their hours drastically reduced.

Those women who were employed as domestic workers were relatively safe, as this was one occupation that men, as a whole, rejected.)

5. The popularity of Huey Long and Father Coughlin in the mid-1930s demonstrated that

A. most Americans felt that the New Deal had gone too far in undermining traditional American values

B. more Americans were turning to religion in the 1930s

C. most Americans favored truly radical solutions to America’s problems

D. many Americans felt that the government should do more to end the problems associated with the Depression

E. Franklin Roosevelt was losing the support of large numbers of voters

(Correct Answer: D. Many Americans wanted more New Deal-style programs and felt that Roosevelt should have gone even further in his proposed legislation. Many may have listened to Long and Coughlin, but when it came time to vote, cast their ballots for Roosevelt—thus negating answer C. The idea that the New Deal went too far in destroying American capitalism was popular in the business community, but was not widely shared in mainstream America.)

If you find an error please notify us in the comments. Thank you!