When Herbert Hoover was elected to the presidency in 1928, Americans viewed him as a man who would further boost the nation’s growing prosperity. During his term of office, however, came the onset of the Great Depression, and the ensuing struggle of the government to relieve Americans and recover the economy. Unfortunately for Hoover, his ideologies and legislation were not as effective in restoring prosperity to the nation.
The Fordney-McCumber Tariff, 1922: This tariff rose the rates on imported goods in the hopes that domestic manufacturing would prosper. The goal of this tariff was to push foreign competition out of the way of American markets and after an isolationist principle was introduced, the U.S. would become self sufficient.
"Rugged Individualism": American Individualism, 1922: The ideal quality which every American should possess, "rugged individualism" meant people who were self made individuals, who could handle the pressures given by a damaged society, and who would rise above them in order to succeed. These ideas were encompassed in Hoover’s book.
Welfare capitalism: Hoover welcomed this idea and urged further movement in this direction. Hoover also believed that cutthroat capitalism was unnecessary. He believed that economic development demanded corporate cooperation in the areas of workers wages and production regulations.
Voluntarism: Hoover believed that a socially responsible economic order could only be brought about by the voluntary action of capitalist leaders and not through governmental persuasion. Hoover saw this as a way to accelerate the decade’s trend towards corporate consolidation and cooperation.
Federal Reserve Board: The Federal Reserve Board tried to establish an easy credit policy. To accomplish this they increased the rate on federal reserve notes to decrease speculation; it also warned member banks not to loan money for the purpose of buying stocks. Their message went unheard, and the stock market crash of 1929 resulted.
Black Thursday: Black Thursday refers to Oct 29, 1929 when the great stock market crash occurred. The crash was caused by a number of ailments: the decline of agriculture, the unregulated trade within the process of buying stocks, and the panic which led to bank foreclosures all over the United States.
Causes of the Great Depression: The Great Depression was not solely caused by the stock market crash in Oct of 1929. On the contrary there were many other factors involved. The inflation in agriculture, the uncontrolled policies of the stock market, the overproduction of goods by industries, the loss of enthusiasm directed at the consumer products that were being produced and a loss of mirth in the economy created a no buying situation.
Depression as an International Event: Due to the devastating effects that the Depression had on the American way of life a spiral of depressions sprung up all over Europe. America could not keep up with international trading thus further deepening the problem. The areas hardest hit was England for it depended greatly on U.S. exports.
Trickle Down Theory: Applied by Herbert Hoover, the Trickle Down theory was an economic ideal which held the belief that the government should get involved in the economy by pumping money into it, and thus creating a surplus supply of money that would "trickle" down onto the rest of society.
Reconstruction Finance Corp., (RFC): Created under the presidency of Herbert Hoover, the RFC was designed to give out loans to banks, railroads, and monopolistic companies in order to pump money back into the economy during the years of the Depression.
Federal Home Loan Act: Under the presidential term of Hoover in 1931 the Federal Home Loan Act was created. Within the act a five man Home Loan Board was created and the creation of banks to handle home mortgages provided money to homeowners that needed loans.
National Credit Corporation: Created in 1931, the National Credit Corporation under the persuasion of Herbert Hoover got the largest banks in the country, at that time, to provide lending agencies that would be able to give banks, on the brink of foreclosure, money that could be used for loans.
Hoover Dam: Originally called Boulder Dam, it stands 726 feet high and 1244 feet wide. Located on the Colorado River in Arizona, Hoover Dam provides flood control, electricity, and irrigation for farms. As part of the New Deal it was constructed between 1931 to 1935 and began operations in 1936.
the Hawley-Smoot Tariff, 1930: Like the Fordney-McCumber Tariff, the Hawley-Smoot Tariff also rose protective tariffs on the United States. It pushed rates on imported goods to the highest point they’ve ever been. The isolationist principle also reflect the isolationist move the US was moving towards in the 1920s..
Emergency Committee for Employment: The Emergency Committee for Employment was created in 1930 under the presidency of Herbert Hoover. The goal for the committee was to coordinate efforts between other agencies in order to provide relief for the massive unemployed during the years of the Great Depression.
Farmers’ Holiday Association: In 1931 farmers from the Midwest got together to discuss the methods they would use in order to stop the policies that devastated the agricultural economy. Out of the meeting came the decision to withhold grain and livestock from the economy.
Hoover Moratorium: The Hoover Moratorium was held in 1931 to discuss the payment of the allied war debts sustained during WWI. Though the issue was never reconciled due to the fact that Britain and other European Countries went off the gold standard before the plan could be implemented.
Bonus Army: The Bonus Army was a group of WWI veterans who were supposed to be given economic relief from the government due to their involvement in the war. However, in 1932 the deadline for the veterans was pushed back by the government to a latter date thus causing the group to march onto Washington to demand their money. Excessive force was used to disband these protesters, and because they were veterans and heroes of this country, Hoover’s popularity plummeted because of it.
"Hooverville": "Hooverville" was a name given to any shanty town that manifested itself during the period when Herbert Hoover was president. The name was termed due to the cold, unfriendly disposition that Hoover took on the policy of helping out the poor. Hoover believed that giving economic aid to the poor would stifle the economy.
Clark Memorandum: The memorandum was called by the U.S. Representative J.Reuben Clark in Dec of 1928. The purpose of the meeting was to reinstate the principles of the Monroe Doctrine to the events that were happening in Latin America; it was contradictory to the ideals of the Roosevelt Corollary.
London Naval Conference: US, GB, Japan, France, and Italy convened in 1930 to come to a mutual agreement pertaining to the number of battleships that were in existence. The number of battleships was a great concern to these nations for they wanted to live in peace with one another, not in a war like situation.
Stimson Doctrine: Based on the principles of the Kellogg-Briand pact, the Hoover-Stimson doctrine was a collection of letters from the U.S. to China and Japan. These letters written on Jan 7, 1932, concluded that the U.S. did not formally recognize any change in territory if it was brought about by armed forces.
Mexico’s naturalization of oil: The president of Mexico in 1938 was a man named Lazaro Cardenas. Cardenas nationalized many oil companies, from England and the United States, valued then at 450 million dollars. The conditions were that Mexico had to give fair compensation to the countries.
Ambassador Morrow: Turned into an ambassador for Mexico, Dwight D. Morrow also named Ambassador Morrow was a worker for J.P.Morgan and Company. The main issue that he focused on was the methods he could use to reconcile differences between the Mexican government and the Church.
Norris-La Guardia (anti-junction) Act, 1932: The Norris-La Guardia Act forbade the issuing of injunctions to maintain anti-union contracts of employment, the prevention to perform work, and the restraining of an act committed by either a group or of an individual striker.
Election of 1932: candidates, issues: The Republican candidate was Hoover and the Democratic one was Franklin D. Roosevelt. The issue was ending the Great Depression. Hoover’s platform was to increase the government’s role in the economy; Roosevelt’s message was "Pay attention to the forgotten man at the bottom of the economy period." Roosevelt won.