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Great Depression: Second New Deal (1935-1938)


Works Progress Administration
New Deal WPA 'Work Promotes Confidence' poster used to encourage laborers to gain confidence from their work.
NEW DEAL: WPA POSTER. - 'Work Promotes Confidence.' - Poster For Works Progress Administration 1936-1941, Encouraging Laborers To Gain Confidence From Their Work, Showing Stylized Man Holding Hammer.. Fine Art. Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest. Web. 17 Jan 2012

Its purpose:
  • Provided jobs for the unemployed who could still work but could not find jobs


Resettlement Administration
Its purpose:
  •  to help farm families relocate and furnish them with loans and new projects.


Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act

Its purpose:
  • Passed after a legally marketed toxic elixir killed 107 people, including many children
  • Protected the consumer
  • Overhauled the public health system

FDR's Alphabet Soup


Social Security Act

Its purpose:
  • Designed to provide a regular income for retired workers aged 65 or older
  • Created framework for America's first national system of social insurance and public assistance


Rural Electrification Administration

Its purpose:
  • created to bring electricity to rural areas like the Tennessee Valley


Federal Writers' Project

Its purpose:

  • "The Federal Writers' Project was created in 1935 as part of the United States Work Progress Administration to provide employment for historians, teachers, writers, librarians, and other white-collar workers."


Farm Security Administration

Its purpose:

  • Created not for "'the helpless and hopeless'" but for those families that had exhausted the means but not the desire for success"
  • Provided loans to "those who could not obtain credit elsewhere"

Classroom Video On Demand Second New Deal

Effects of the 'Second' New Deal

Considered a landmark piece of legistlation, Social Security continues today.

Although the US Army never wanted the responsiblity of training the CCC--called Roosevelt's tree army--the CCC had last effects such as
  • functioning as the first environomentalists
  • reseeding the environment for future generations to enjoy
  • planting 2.3 billion trees
  • saving America's topsoil for future farmers
  • building all the state and national parks
  • fostering an ethic of conservation
  • teaching the value of working as a team
  • preparing, ironically, 2 to 3 million men to be able to join the Army when the United States entered WWII

Both the PWA and the WPA agencies focused on public works projects that would benefit communities nationwide. By providing work relief to people who had lost jobs, these PWA and WPA people built projects that still benefit Americans today such as

  • bridges and tunnels
  • highways
  • dams
  • public buildings
  • water projects


National Youth Administration
(an established program within WPA)

Its purpose:
  • Provided work training based on U.S. citizenship and financial need for youth between ages sixteen and twenty-five
  • Offered courses in writing, reading, and arithmetic
  • Operated two programs:
    • the Works Project Program to train unemployed, out-of-school youth
    •  the Student Aid Program to provide work-study training for high school, college, and graduate students


National Resources Conservation Service
(aka U.S. Soil Conservation Service (SCS))

Its purpose:
  • "Helped private landowners to help them conserve, maintain and improve their natural resources."


Fair Labor Standards Act

Its purpose:
  • "Established a minimum wage, created a maximum forty-hour work week, and abolished child labor."


Banking Act of 1935

Its purpose:
  • Brought the Federal Reserve system under closer government control
  • Created a central banking system


United States Housing Authority
aka National Housing Act
aka Housing Act of 1937
aka Wagner-Steagall Act

Its purpose:
  • "Renewed the federal commitment to providing decent, affordable housing for America’s urban poor."
  • "Created the federally-funded, locally-operated public housing program that still functions today."


National Labor Relations Act
aka Wagner Act

Its purpose:
  • Gave workers the right to form unions ad bargain collectively with their employers
  • Established the National Relations Labor Board
  • Addressed the relations between unions and employers in the private sector