Social History for Every Classroom


Social History for Every Classroom

menuAmerican Social History Project  ·    Center for Media and Learning

  • Historical Eras > Great Depression and World War II (1929-1945) (x)

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"A Mad Tea Party" Analysis Worksheet

This worksheet helps students undertake a close reading of the 1936 cartoon "A Mad Tea Party," about President Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal. It also asks them to write a paragraph explaining the cartoon's argument.

A Citizen Opposes Social Security

In this letter to first lady Eleanor Roosevelt, an American protests the Social Security program, created two years earlier. For Social Security, the federal government took money out of working people’s paychecks in order to create a fund that [...]

The NAACP Challenges Social Security (with text supports)

President Roosevelt sent his Social Security bill, named the “Economic Security Act,” to Congress in January 1935. Congress held committee hearings on the bill. Here, a representative of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored [...]

What is Social Security?

This brief overview describes how the Social Security program originated during the Great Depression and how the program works.

"A monthly check to you"

The Social Security Act of 1935 started a national old-age pension for workers who earned wages. This meant that at age 65 these workers could retire and receive monthly payments from the government. To pay for this program, workers and employers [...]

Analyzing Evidence about Social Security Worksheet

This worksheet helps students to analyze three pieces of evidence about Social Security (a government poster, a letter about the program, and Congressional testimony about the program) and write a paragraph explaining the evidence's different points [...]

World War I Veterans March in Washington (with text supports)

After World War I, Congress passed a bill promising each military veteran of that war a cash bonus that would be paid in 1945. In the summer of 1932, facing unemployment and poverty because of the Great Depression, veterans began demanding that the [...]

President Roosevelt Calls for Equal Economic Opportunity

On June 27, 1936, President Franklin Roosevelt accepted the Democratic party's nomination to run for a second term as President of the U.S. In this excerpt from his speech to the Democratic National Convention, Roosevelt compares the struggle to [...]

"Unemployed men queued outside a depression soup kitchen"

As the Great Depression dragged on for months, and then years, after the stock market crash of 1929, Americans grew increasingly hungry and desperate. Long lines outside soup kitchens and other private charities that distributed free or low cost [...]

A Brooklyn Rabbi Supports the New Deal

In September 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt sent a letter to clergyman across the United States, asking them whether conditions in their communities had improved since the start of the New Deal. He was particularly interested in people's [...]

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