Tag: Great Depression

More Posters of the WPA (Works Progress Administration)

More Posters of the WPA (Works Progress Administration)

Ephemera, Featured Posts
Just when you thought you'd seen the last (well, only) gallery of posters from the Works Progress Administration, BAM! Here comes another one, only four years later. According to Wikipedia, the WPA was the largest and most ambitious of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal agencies, employing millions of workers to carry out public works projects. Agency workers constructed public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects. Nearly every community in the United States had a park, bridge or school constructed by the agency, which especially benefited rural and Western areas. The budget at the outset of the WPA in 1935 was $1.4 billion a year (about 6.7 percent of the 1935 GDP), and in total it spent $13.4 billion. That's all well and g...
Book report: The Worst Hard Time

Book report: The Worst Hard Time

Books
You ever talk to one of those annoying people who always feels compelled to one-up your tales of woe?  You try to get a little sympathy for spraining your ankle, and all they can do is go on about the time they broke their leg twenty years ago.  Then there's the other variation, where you try to talk about a difficult situation with an older relative and they bust out the "back in my day..." line to trump you.  It's like, enough already old timer. Well here's the thing about the folks who lived through the Dust Bowl of the 1930s - their stories really are worse than your stories.  Every time.  And they don't have to embellish or exaggerate.  The trick is to make those stories readable and engaging, which isn't as easy as it may seem.  Fortunately we have Timothy Egan's 2005 work, The Wo
Posters of the WPA

Posters of the WPA

Ephemera
Back in the day (1935 to be precise), President Franklin D. Roosevelt created the Works Progress Administration (WPA), an enormous government program aimed at providing employment for millions of Americans affected by the Great Depression. The legacy of the WPA is a host of public works (bridges, roads, etc.) and cultural projects. That's all well and good obviously, but what I really care about are the cool posters designed to promote many of the WPA's programs. All of these images and hundreds more are available as part of the Library of Congress's "Posters of the WPA" collection. I've simply picked what I feel are some of the most visually appealing and added my usual pithy commentary. As you'll see, these great images are very much of their time and most display an Art Deco sensibili...