History 521
USA, 1918-1970
Document Based Question Assignment
Topic: President Roosevelt and the Great Depression
Historical Context:
When Franklin D. Roosevelt entered office as President in 1933 he encountered an America that
was dramatically different from the roaring twenties: nearly a quarter of Americans were
unemployed, breadlines were common sights in every major city, banks and business had gone
bankrupt, and there was a general feeling of despair and pessimism among the American people.
Roosevelt promised that he would help alleviate the worse effects of the depression and
rejuvenate the economy with his New Deal policies. There remains some debate, however, as to
whether these policies were the most effective responses to the Great Depression.
Analyze the responses of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s administration to the problems of the Great
Depression. How effective were these responses?
Write a typed, double-spaced, multi-paragraph response (1.5-2 pages) with a thesis
statement, supporting evidence, and conclusion. Make sure to refer to all the documents in
your response. Do NOT quote from the documents. Rather, refer to them using parentheses, ex.
(Document 1). You will have one class period to work on this. This assignment will be marked
according to the 6 point written response rubric (see your binder).
*This assignment is due on____________________________________________________
Follow these steps:
1) Read the documents
2) Group the documents. Do the documents support each other? Does one document offer
another perspective?
3) Develop a thesis statement
4) Begin writing your first draft
Document 1
Document 2
Document 3
Document 4
Document 5
Document 6
Document 7
Document 8