Dust Bowl Affected American Culture

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The Dust Bowl
The Dust Bowl was a horrific event in the history of the Great Plains that affected American culture and affected people financially. The dustbowl was the name given to a horrible storm in the southern states of Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, and Colorado during a massive drought. The Dust Bowl caused farmers to leave their livelihoods and the land they loved behind them which created a huge migration west for work in urban places. The Dust Bowl sustained The Great Depression by affecting farmers’ ability to grow and sell crops, which in turn affected the economy.
With little to no rainfall, it was a devastating time for farmers and ranchers living in southern states. Farming and ranching were a large part of American culture
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The Dust Bowl was a factor that sustained the Great Depression. When the Great Depression started in 1929, agriculture was affected even more because crop prices dropped. When the prices dropped, farmers had to buy more land to produce more crops to meet the payments required to pay back the banks the money they owed. “Farmers would watch the scorched earth crack open, heard the gray grass crunch underfoot, and worried about how long they would be able to pay their bills” (Worster, 11). About a year later, the land became poorer, which forced farmers to get financial assistance from the WPA (Works Progress Administration). When farmers’ couldn’t maintain their land and operations, they were forced to relocate. “Some farmers voluntarily deeded their farms to creditors, others faced foreclosure by banks, and still others had to leave temporarily to search for work to provide for their families. In fact, at the peak of farm transfers in 1933 to 1934, nearly one in ten farms changed possession with half of those being involuntary from a combination of the depression and drought.” (National Drought Mitigation Center). On top of either losing a farm or leaving a farm voluntarily, moving at this time was also costly. Many families would have to restart with little to no resources; even affording necessities …show more content…
The first of those disasters usually gets all the attention, although for the many Americans living on farms drought was the more serious problem. In the spring of 1930 over three million men and women were out of work.” (Worster, 10). “They had lost their jobs or had been laid off without pay in the aftermath of the stock market crash of the preceding fall in 1929. Another twelve million people would suffer the same fate in the following two years during the depression.” (Worster, 10). The financial stress in the country was affecting citizens from all walks of life. If the Great Depression was not occurring simultaneously with the Dust Bowl, there might have been more funds to assist farms during this time of need. However, there just simply was not enough money to bail out any business with relief of any kind. The way to grow an economy is to spend and purchase; when no one, including large businesses or the government, has money, this doesn’t