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What measures did Roosevelt introduce in his 'New Deal' to bring recovery in banking, agriculture and industry? How successful were they by 1939?

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Felicity Weston History Essay 'F.D. Roosevelt was elected president in 1932 to end the depression. He promised to do so by offering a New Deal to the American people.' What measures did Roosevelt introduce in his 'New Deal' to bring recovery in banking, agriculture and industry? How successful were they by 1939? Roosevelt promised 'Action, and action now'. However, he did not have a clear idea what exactly should be done or how much it was going to cost. He worked intimately with a panel of experts called the 'Brain Trust', to put together a programme of new laws, which would help America out of its depression. He called it the 'New deal'. This new deal programme had three main aims: Relief, recovery and reform. Relief was to relieve extreme poverty, feed the starving and stop people losing their homes or farms. Recovery was to revive the economy by getting industry going and people working again; and Reform was to make the USA a better place for ordinary people by bringing in measures such as unemployment insurance and old-age pensions, and help for the sick, disabled and needy. Roosevelt realised how important it was to gain the trust of the American people and arouse their confidence. Therefore, just eight days after his inauguration, he gave the first of his famous radio broadcasts, which became known as 'fireside chats'. He explained his actions in a simple and direct way, and asked Americans to work with him. ...read more.


The CCC agency took young men under the age of 25 out of the cities and into the countryside where they were put in camps. In these camps they were made to do hard work such as cleaning land and planting trees. For this the young men got food and clothes and some money. Many of the young men would have sent much of this money to their families back in the city. This would provide relief for the family back home because extra income would be coming into the house. Also the family in the city would have one less mouth to feed therefore they would be saving money, which once again would provide relief. In my view FDR did well to set up these two agencies, but they were not solving the problem of the depression, but anyhow it was a start and I am sure the American people would have welcomed the reform. The AAA paid farmers to produce less food, by taking land out of the production or reducing their livestock. FDR's idea was that if there was less produce this would mean the prices would have to go up. So between 1933 and 1939 farmer's income doubled. By introducing this agency FDR helped farmers but did not help the sharecroppers and tenants who worked on the land. Many of them were evicted because of lack of work and they were replaced with machinery that the government funded, yet another example of FDR fulfilling his promises. ...read more.


The employers had to treat and pay more attention to the workers. After the struggle with the Supreme Court, the New Deal appeared to be running out of steam, especially when a second wave of depression hit America in 1937. The reforming days were largely over and in January 1939 Roosevelt acknowledged that the New Deal had come to an end. There is no doubt that the first phase of the New Deal from 1933 to 1936 brought about a degree of recovery. However, in 1936 there were still around 9 million unemployed in the USA. Although this was a reduction of over 4 million since Roosevelt became president in 1932, it was seen as a failure, by critics who wanted the government to take even more radical action. Some groups who had been badly affected by the depression had still not received any help by 1936. For example, the old did not receive pensions until 1940 and the plight of many agricultural workers remained desperate, despite the work of the Resettlement Administration. Then in 1937, the government started to spend less money on its schemes, production fell again and a second wave of depression hit the country. Roosevelt pumped billions of dollars into the economy to prevent the situation getting worse. However, it was clear that continual injections of government money were needed. It was only after 1941, when the USA became involved in the Second World War and the demand for American manufactured goods and food increased dramatically, that the economy was lifted out of depression. ...read more.

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