Guided Reading Questions for Chapter 21 Section 2:

DeYoung US 2
Guided Reading Questions for Chapter 21: The Great Depression
Answer each question completely on a separate piece of paper. All
questions are listed in order as you read, answers should be handwritten.
Section 1: Causes of the Depression
1) Why did Americans invest in stocks instead of putting their money in savings
2) To what did Hoover attribute the economic prosperity of the US?
3) Why did many farmers face economic difficulties during the 1920’s?
4) Why did the uneven distribution of wealth contribute to the economic troubles of the
5) What problem did the availability of easy credit create?
6) What was the basis for the soaring stock prices during the 1920’s?
7) What happened when investors lost confidence in the stock market?
8) How were the collapse of the stock market and the collapse of the banking system
9) How did these events impact the nations businesses and workers?
Section 2: Americans Face Hard times
1) In what way did the Great Depression “touch every American”?
2) What does Charley Bull suggest about life for people who left home to become
hobos? (look at “Riding the rails” on p. 709)
3) Between 1921- 1929, what was the highest unemployment rate? What was the
unemployment rate in 1933, according to the book?
4) What are some of the ways the Depression impacted life at home, as suggested on
p. 710 of the text?
5) Read “Brother can you spare a dime” by E. Hamburg on p. 710: what does
Hamburg suggest in this song, regarding the plight of the everyday worker? Hint:
who are “they”?
6) What were Hoovervilles? Where was the largest located?
7) How did Depression- era crop and livestock prices affect farmers?
8) What other disaster caused the collapse of many farms?
9) What happened to families who lost their land/ farms?
10) How did these calamities affect the agriculture industry?
11) How did the Great Depression affect unemployed men (psychologically)?
12) How did the Dust Bowl affect Mexican –Americans?
13) What group was “the last to be hired and first to be fired”? Why was this the
Section 3: Hoover’s Response Fails
1) What was “volunteerism” and what did it depend on?
2) Why did volunteerism fail?
3) Did Hoover’s background prepare him to deal with the Great Depression? Explain.
4) How was the Reconstruction Finance Corporation an example of “trickle-down
economics?” Make sure to explain both terms.
5) Why or why not was the RFC successful in reversing the effects of the Great
6) In what ways was the Colorado River damming project a success for Hoover?
7) Describe the arguments against capitalism that began to surface at this time: What
criticisms were made of capitalism and democracy? What happened as a result of these
arguments elsewhere in the world?
8) Do you think the Bonus Army was justified in their demands?
9) Why did Hoover order the Bonus Army be removed? Why did this soil Hoover’s
image as a leader?