The Great Depression and Herbert Hoover

The Great Depression started to take effect in August 1923 and did not end until March 1933. This was a time of an economic crisis, where money became scarce from job loss and debt. World War I brought the United States a great of money, with the need of mass production for equipment to supply the troops. As most working Americans saw this as an opportunity to start to put money in their savings, as they had a good steady income from working. The banks were giving lines of credit to the American people, in a way to make some money on the interest. Banks were also using the peoples saving to invest into companies, as new products were always in the market. It wasn’t until the war ended that the Great Depression happened, as no one suspected as the worst times of Americans was about to approach. It was going to be like a drought but with money. A drought they were not ready for and the support that would not be their when it happened.

The one person that could have had such an impact on how to try and control the situation seemed to turn his back on the American people, the president. Herbert Hoover became the president seven months prior to this time, as his philosophy is that, “[h]e believed in a limited role for government and worried that excessive federal intervention posed a threat to capitalism and individualism” (History.com Editors 2009). When the market crashed, his philosophy stood the same, as if the government intervened it would change the American peoples worth, as most would count on the government for help.

When the most predictable had happened with the market crash, everyone was running to the banks for their money. With the mass majority pulling all their savings out, led the banks to fail. The banks did not have enough money to pay back the American people, due the banks using it to invest into stocks that came crashing down. With the debt still large on the American people, people started losing everything from their houses, to land, to their lifestyle that they had got gotten used to. The American people saw the good times, when the war was happening, but now they need emergency assistance and fast.

As this time was so tough on the American people it also could have been prevented in many ways. The banks failed and so should have the credit that was given to the people, as they should have known if they couldn’t pay back the people how were they going to get paid for the debt they used.

As the people should have just pulled enough money out of the banks in order to survive, not their life savings, in knowledge of knowing what would happen to the banks recover. This all does fall back on one person the president as there should have been safety measures put into place to prevent such a catastrophic event, “[a]ccordingly, Hoover vetoed several bills that would have provided direct relief to struggling Americans. “Prosperity cannot be restored by raids upon the public Treasury,” he explained in his 1930 State of the Union address” (History.com Editors 2009). Many Americans saw this as him turning his back on them, but they should heed the warning. As he could have put a limit on the amount of money being taking out and wiping the debt of individuals that their savings was spent by the bank. This is a time that will go down in history, as it already has, as a life lesson for when things are going well, they can change just as fast.

References

  1. History.com Editors. “Herbert Hoover.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 29 Oct. 2009,
  2. www.history.com/topics/us-presidents/herbert-hoover.