In Their Own Words – The Great Depression

by admin on January 5, 2009

With all of this talk about a recession, economic downturn, bailout, and all of the other buzzwords the media uses to get our attention I thought I would dig a little deeper into the actual Great Depression that my grandparents and great grandparents lived through to gain a better perspective on what is going on in America these days.

I’m currently reading “We Had Everything But Money” from Reminisce Books. These are the same folks behind Reminisce Magazine for those of you familiar with that particular publication.

I didn’t ask my grandparents enough questions about the Great Depression before they passed away so I’m left with stories and third person accounts from others in the family. This book is just filled with first person accounts and memories from other family members who grew up hearing the stories from their parents and grandparents. The vintage photographs that accompany each personal account really bring home the thoughts, fears, and struggles that people were dealing with during this dark time in our history.

The common thread among all of these stories is that no matter the hand dealt them, folks did what they had to do to survive. Whether it was collecting glass bottles to sell to moonshiners during the prohibition period, making clothing from feed sacks, growing huge gardens, driving across the country for work, or any of the hundreds of other ways people made do – the same theme prevailed.

I highly recommend this book as a great way to get personal accounts of how people made it through the Great Depression. If you’re like me, it will probably lead you to look for other books on the subject as well.

Last year (gosh it’s hard remembering it’s a new year already) I read “The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl.” It is a wrenching account of those that lived and died in the Dust Bowl during the Great Depression years.

The next book on the Great Depression that I’ll be reading is “The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression.”

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{ 1 comment }

Em January 6, 2009 at 8:38 pm

Hey there…I wrote a paper about the Great Depression in H.S. I still have a copy, and for that paper I interviewed Grandma N. I can dig it out for you if you’re interested. ­čÖé

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