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The New Deal  

In July 1932 in a nomination acceptance speech, Franklin D. Roosevelt pledged himself to a New Deal for the American people. This Guide will cover material which will be of help in finding information about this important period in American history
Last Updated: Jun 30, 2016 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Franklin D. Roosevelt 1882-1945


FDR and his "New Deal."

In 1932 the American economy was in a serious depression.  Unemployment was high, farmers were losing their land, many homeowners were in foreclosure and banks were being flooded with panicked investors.  The country was in dire straits.  The sitting president, Herbert Hoover, while a highly educated man, seemed incapable of formulating an effective course of action.   His aloof manner did not inspire confidence in people.  The election of 1932 changed all this. On March 4, 1933 Franklin Delano Roosevelt became the  thirty second president of the United States.   This gregarious, self confident man would change the nature of American politics.  Along with a group of talented administrators, Roosevelt and congressional lawmakers would create agencies and programs that would improve the lot of millions of people and inspire confidence in the efficacy  of  the federal government.   Most historians agree that the New Deal did not end the Depression, but it did ameliorate the suffering of many people.  While some of the laws Congress passed were declared unconsitutional, others are still with us  ( e.g. the Social Security Act of 1935, the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934).   The power of the central government was greatly increased as well as the importance of the Office of the President.  While some may now say that the legacy of the New Deal is waning, it is still with us today.

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