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1819 - Panic as post War of 1812-boom ended; triggered by revival of European agriculture (after the end of Napoleonic Wars), contraction of credit instituted by the Second Bank of the United States (paid off loans made to finance the Louisiana Purchase); sales of undeveloped land on  frontier slowed, price of cotton and other crops dropped sharply; many farmers unable to pay debts, led to foreclosures, numerous bank failures; 1822 - panic ended; many Westerners blamed Bank of the United States, including Andrew Jackson; 1833 - Jackson took revenge; vetoed bill to extend charter of bank.

February 12, 1837 - Irate group of unemployed New Yorkers gathered to protest skyrocketing food and fuel prices, city's rapidly escalating rents; February 13, 1837 - riots in New York over high price of flourMay 10, 1837 - Panic as 1) rising tide of overextended credit, investment suddenly ended, 2) dire consequences of abandoning long reliance on gold and silver as foundation of wealth, advancing personal, national wealth with open-ended credit, bank loans, personal indebtedness; 3) failure of cash-strapped banks in New York; Panic of 1837: 1) September 10, 1833 -  President Jackson declared his intention to remove government deposits from the Bank of the United States; announced government would no longer use Second Bank of the United States, country’s national bank; 2) transferred federal funds to state  banks ("pet banks"), enabled state banks to extend easy credit (easy terms); led to soaring land sales in the West (1832 - $2,600,000, 1836 - $24,900,000), accompanying boom in canal and road construction (latter largely financed by British investors); 3) 1836 - Jackson issued Specie Circular; required buyers of government land to pay for it with gold or silver; caused buyers to withdraw specie from banks, buy less land;  loss of gold and silver reserves led to "liquidity crisis", restriction of bank credit, many bank failures; every bank in country suspending converting of  paper currency into specie on demand; forced closing of hundreds of banks, wiped out scores of small businesses and farmers (had heavily relied on  support of local fiscal institutions); unemployment climbed to unprecedented levels, tension and anguish gripped much of the country; in New York, the militia had to be called in to keep order on Wall Street;  1838 - banks resumed specie payments; but revival was short-lived.; economy depressed until 1843.

Panic of 1857: August 24, 1857 (-1859) - New York branch of Ohio Life Insurance and Trust Company closed; plunged America into the Panic of 1857; had loaned $5 million to railroad builders, been swindled out of millions more by manager of New York branch; unable to pay extensive debt to Eastern bankers, Oforced into bankruptcy; New York bankers began to panic, shifted suddenly to hard credit policies; demanded immediate payment on all mature loans; refused to accept promissory notes from merchants and other debtors short on money; depositors began to withdraw gold from banks, dropped gold reserves by $20 million by mid-September. September 12, 1859 -  hopes for gold from California sank; steamer 'Central America' lost at sea in hurricane ($1.6 million in gold, 400 passengers); banks suspended gold payments, stocks plummeted, and thousands of businesses, including half of New York City’s brokerages, went bankrupt; banks in Philadelphia, other American cities soon suspended gold payments; collapse of credit halted construction of buildings and railroads; reduced nation’s trade to a trickle;  unemployment in the Northeast and Midwest skyrocketed (estimated 100,000 in Manhattan and Brooklyn out of work by late October); December 1859 - loss from business failures in New York City reached $120 million. The economic repercussions spread to Europe and South America; immigration to United States dropped substantially; gap between the economic interests of North and South widened.

Panic of 1857 caused by: 1) European demand for American grain crops fell drastically; end of Crimean War reopened Western European markets to Russian grains; 2) bumper crops produced glut of agricultural goods, lower prices, less profits for American farmers, many of whom were in debt to Eastern merchants and bankers; 3) United States ran trade imbalance with foreign nations, drained gold from country; 4) banks raised interest rates (during the summer of 1857); desperately sought to build gold reserves; 5) much of investment in railroads, land was speculative, based on credit; not expected to be profitable for years.

November 5, 1857 - 4000 rallied at Tompkins Square in New York City; listened to speakers demand that city government establish more public works to hire unemployed, guarantee a minimum wage, build housing for poor, prevent landlords from evicting unemployed; November 6, 1857 - 5000 marched to Merchants’ Exchange on Wall Street; called on city’s financial institutions to loan businesses money so the unemployed could be hired;    November 9, 1857 - larger crowd gathered at City Hall; met by 300 city police, brigade of state militia; federal troops, under General Winfield Scott, guarded federal sub-treasury and customhouse.

1873 - Panic: 1) failure of Jay Cooke and Company, country’s preeminent investment banking firm (principal backer of the Northern Pacific Railroad, handled most of government’s wartime loans); 2) New York Stock Exchange shut down for ten days to stop steep decline of stock prices; causes: dislocations caused by Civil War, reckless overbuilding of American railroads, opening of Suez Canal, (major readjustments in world trade).

Panic of 1893 - Other Great Depression: 1) silver interests ('silverites'): a) Congress passed Fourth Coinage Act on February 12, 1873: abolished bimetallism, authorized $1 and $3 gold coins; silver dollar (devalued) ceased as standard of value in favor of gold standard (only acceptable metallic standard); b) Congress passed Bland-Allison Act ("limping bimetallism") on February 28, 1878 - restored coinage of standard silver dollar, required Treasury to buy silver = result of pressure from western states, compromise between  silver and bimetal-standard groups with gold-standard forces; c)  Congress passed Sherman Silver Purchase Act (superceded Bland-Allison Act) on July 14, 1890: concession to western silver mining interests (included silver in federal coinage, required Treasury to buy 4.5 million ounces of silver/month with notes redeemable in gold or silver, added substantially to amount of money already in circulation, drove down price of silver as production increased, reduced Treasury's gold reserves as T-note holders swapped into gold as silver prices fell); d) gold reserves dropped to $64 million) in  January 1895; 2) prices: Congress passed McKinley Tariff in October 1890 (set average ad valorem tariff rate for imports to United States at 48.4%); 3) bankruptcies: Philadelphia and Reading Railway Company, National Cordage Company collapsed, touched off panic on Wall Street; more than 15,000 companies (more than 600 banks) failed by end of year (nearly one-third of country’s railroad mileage was put into receivership); 4) economic contraction: GNP fell almost 12%.

February 20, 1893 - Philadelphia and Reading Railroad went bankrupt (debts of $125 million; key transporter for Pennsylvania's anthracite mine industry); helped plunge America into Panic of 1893; railroad survived in various forms (fiscal difficulties drove it out of business in early 1970s); 1894 - unemployment rose to 18.4% (3% of work force in 1892); 1895 - J.P. Morgan saved United States Gold Reserves (within days of complete elimination); offered, to President Grover Cleveland,l to form syndicate (headed by Morgan) to buy bonds from United States in exchange for $62 million dollars worth of European gold; no alternative, only decision for Cleveland given circumstances; public opinion very much against Cleveland; ignored fact that Cleveland had saved United States' gold reserves.

October 16, 1907 (fourth panic in 34 years) - failure of Fritz Augustus Heinze's United Copper Company (incorporated 1902); led to runs on banks (after San Francisco's 1906 earthquake, London insurance companies had paid claims; large capital outflow┬ had forced Bank of England to nearly double interest rates, reject terms of U.S. trade bills; had pushed U.S. into recession, made markets more volatile); October 22, 1907 - Knickerbocker Trust Company closed; precipitated panic - depositors began to withdraw large sums (Charles T. Barney, president, Heinze associate, committed suicide); J. P. Morgan rallied bankers to raise cash to help sound institutions to withstand pressure of frightened depositors, to support sagging stock prices; President Theodore Roosevelt authorized deposit of federal funds in New York banks to bolster reserves; allowed U.S. Steel to acquire Tennessee Coal and Iron Company in order to save brokerage house that owned it (later regretted decision); long-range effect of the panic on economy not great; led to creation of Federal Reserve System in 1913-14.

F. Augustus Heinze

F. Augustus Heinze -  United Copper Company; Panic of 1907 (

Headquarters of Knickerbocker Trust Company in 1905 (corner of 5th Avenue and 34th Street) (

January 7, 1931 - The Committee for Unemployment Relief, formed at President Hoover's command, released report; detailed depths of nation's Depression woes: some 4 to 5 million Americans unemployed; 1932 - some 13 million Americans without jobs.

National Banking Era and Great Depression: Number of Bank Failures

National Banking Era

Great Depression

Panic Dates

Number of Failures

Panic Dates

Number of Failures

September 1873


November-December 1930


May 1884


April-August 1931


November 1890


September-October 1931


May-August 1893


June-July 1932


October-December 1907


February-March 1933

bank holiday

(Source: Banking Panics of the Gilded Age / Elmus Wicker (2000), p. 143)

Banking Crises, 1873- 1931: Total Bank Suspensions as a Percent of Total Number of Banks

National Banking Era

Great Depression

Panic Date


Panic Date



see note





April-August 1931




September-October 1931






(Note: The number of state and national bank suspensions as a percentage of the total number state and national banks was 1.648% in 1873 [no uncovered estimates of the total number of unincorporated banks for 1873];  Source: Banking Panics of the Gilded Age / Elmus Wicker (2000), p. 6)

April 14, 1935 - Black Sunday in Dust Bowl ("dust bowl" reportedly coined by reporter in mid-1930s; referred to plains of western Kansas, southeastern Colorado, panhandles of Texas and Oklahoma, northeastern New Mexico -  had been over-plowed by farmers, overgrazed by cattle and sheep; resulted in soil erosion in midst of eight-year drought which had begun in 1931; created dire situation for farmers and ranchers; Roosevelt’s administration introduced programs to alleviate farming crisis, provide farmers with source of income; Soil Conservation Service (SCS), in Department of Agriculture,  promoted improved farming and land management techniques; paid farmers to utilize safer practices; 1939 - rains arrived, drought ended.

(Depression - 1819), Clyde A. Haulman (2008). Virginia and the Panic of 1819: The First Great Depression and the Commonwealth. (Brookfield, VT: Pickering & Chatto Ltd., 198 p.). Chancellor Professor of Economics and Chair, Department of Economics (College of William and Mary). Panic of 1819; Virginia -- history; Economic history -- 1800-1850; crises--economic; Depressions -- 1829. America's first experience of boom-bust cycle; booming agricultural exports and transatlantic trade, intense land speculation westwards, easy credit from state banks, newly created Second Bank of the United States; boom ended as foreign markets dried up, prices fell, credit withdrawn; one of most dramatic economic crises experienced by US during 19th century; characteristics of ensuing depression, its impacts on Virginia, nation.

(Panic of 1857), George W. Van Vleck (1967). The Panic of 1857, An Analytical Study. (New York, NY: AMS Press, 126 p.). Depressions--1857--United States; United States--Economic conditions.

(Panic of 1857), James L. Huston (1987). The Panic of 1857 and the Coming of the Civil War. (Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 315 p.). Depressions--1857--United States; United States--Economic conditions--To 1865; United States--Politics and government--1857-1861.

(Panic of 1893), W. Jett Lauck (1907). The Causes of the Panic of 1893. (Boston, MA: Houghton, Mifflin, 122 p.). Panics. 

(Panic of 1873), (Northern Pacific), M. John Lubetkin (2006). Jay Cooke’s Gamble: The Northern Pacific Railroad and the Panic of 1873. (Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 380 p.). Former Cable Television Executive. Cooke, Jay, 1821-1905; Northern Pacific Railroad Company; Financial crises--United States--History--19th century. Soldiers, engineers, businessmen, politicians, Native Americans who tried to build or block the Northern Pacific

(Depression - 1893), Charles Hoffmann (1970). The Depression of the Nineties; An Economic History. (Westport, CT: Greenwood Pub. Corp., 326 p.). Depressions--1893; United States--Economic conditions--1865-1918.

(Depression - 1893), Douglas Steeples and David O. Whitten (1998). Democracy in Desperation: The Depression of 1893 (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 261 p.). Depressions--1893--United States; United States--Politics and government--1893-1897; United States--Economic conditions--1865-1918.

(Panic of 1907), Sarah McNelis (1968). Copper King at War; The Biography of F. Augustus Heinze. (Missoula, MT: University of Montana Press, 230 p.). Heinze, Frederick Augustus, 1869-1914; Copper industry and trade --Montana.

(Panic of 1907), Robert F. Bruner, Sean D. Carr (2007). The Panic of 1907: Lessons Learned from the Market’s "Perfect Storm". (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 272 p.). Dean of the Darden Graduate School of Business Administration and Charles C. Abbott Professor of Business Administration (University of Virginia); Director of Corporate Innovation Programs at the Darden School's Batten Institute (University of Virginia). Depressions--1907--United States; Financial crises--United States--History--20th century; Stock exchanges--United States--History--20th century. One of worst crises in modern financial history; ultimately transformed American financial system; resulted in establishment of modern Federal Reserve.

Panic of October 1907 - outside U. S. Subtreasury building at Wall and Broad St. in October 1907 (above; source:

(Depression - 1929), Gilbert Seldes (1933). The Years of the Locust (America, 1929-1932). (Boston, MA: Little, Brown, 355 p.). Depressions--1929.; Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945; United States--Politics and government--1929-1933. 

(Depression - 1929), H.W. Hodson (1938). Slump and Recovery, 1929-1937: A Survey of World Economic Affairs. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 484 p.). Economic history--1918-1945; Depressions--1929; Finance--History. 

(Depression - 1929), Broadus Mitchell (1947). Depression Decade; From New Era through New Deal, 1929-1941. (New York, NY: Rinehart, 462 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945.

(Depression - 1929), Dixon Wecter (1948). The Age of the Great Depression, 1929-1941. (New York, NY: Macmillan, 362 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Civilization; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945; United States--Social conditions--1918-1932; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945; United States--Politics and government--1933-1945.

(Depression - 1929), Milton Friedman and Anna Jacobson Schwartz. (1965 - new edition in 2008). The Great Contraction, 1929-1933. (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 150 p.). Nobel Prize in Economics in 1976; Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. Money --United States --History; Currency question --United States --History; Monetary policy --United States -- History. Federal Reserve could have stemmed severity of Depression, failed to exercise its role of managing monetary system, ameliorating banking panics; importance of money supply in functioning of economy.

(Depression - 1929), Edward Robb Ellis (1970). A Nation in Torment; The Great American Depression, 1929-1939. (New York, NY: Coward-McCann, 576 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), Andrew Bergman (1971). We’re in the Money: Depression America and Its Films. (New York, NY: New York University Press, 200 p.). Motion pictures--United States--History; Depressions--1929--United States.

(Depression - 1929), Goronwy Rees (1971). The Great Slump Capitalism in Crisis, 1929-1933. (New York, NY: Harper & Row, 310 p.). Depressions--1929; Economic history--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), Joseph Stancliffe Davis (1975). The World Between the Wars, 1919-39: An Economist’s View. (Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 436 p.). Emeritus Professor of Economic Research (Stanford University). Economic history--1918-1945; Depressions--1929; Business cycles.  

(Depression - 1929), Peter Temin (1976). Did Monetary Forces Cause the Great Depression? (New York, NY: Norton, 201 p.). Professor of Economics (MIT). Depressions--1929--United States; Money supply--United States; Monetary policy--United States.

(Depression - 1929), Joseph Paul Waters (1977). Technological Acceleration and the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Arno Press, 250 p.). Technological innovations--United States--History; Depressions--1929--United States.

(Depression - 1929), William E. Stoneman (1979). A History of the Economic Analysis of the Great Depression in America. (New York, NY: Garland Pub., 263 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; Economics--United States--History; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), edited by Richard Lowitt and Maurine Beasley (1981). One Third of a Nation: Lorena Hickok Reports on the Great Depression. (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 378 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), Robert S. McElvaine (1984). The Great Depression: America, 1929-1941. (New York, NY: Times Books, 402 p.). Chair, Department of History (Millsaps College). Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--History--1933-1945.; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), Barrie A. Wigmore (1985). The Crash and Its Aftermath: A History of Securities Markets in the United States, 1929-1933. (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 731 p.). Stock exchanges--United States--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--United States; Stock Market Crash, 1929.

(Depression -1929), Charles P. Kindleberger (1986). The World in Depression, 1929-1939. (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 355 p.). Ford International Professor of Economics Emeritus (MIT). Depressions -- 1929; Economic history -- 1918-1945. Best book on economically decisive decade of 20th century.

(Depression - 1929), Michael A. Bernstein (1987). The Great Depression: Delayed Recovery and Economic Change in America, 1929-1939. (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 269 p.). Professor of History, Associated Faculty Member in Economics (University of California, San Diego). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. Crisis in financial markets with long-run transformation in kinds of goods and services required by firms, households.

(Depression - 1929), John A. Garraty (1987). The Great Depression: An Inquiry into the Causes, Course, and Consequences of the Worldwide Depression of the Nineteen-Thirties, as Seen by Contemporaries and in the Light of History. (New York, NY: Anchor Press/Doubleday, 292 p.). Depressions--1929; Economic history--1918-1945. 20th century social, industrial, financial, political forces; contemporary writings of 1930s, interrelated passage of various nations through deflation, inflation, farm price collapse, unemployment, factory closings, relief programs, public works; failure of vitally needed international cooperation, pervasive fear of national deficits.

(Depression - 1929), Peter Temin (1989). Lessons from the Great Depression. (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 193 p.). Professor of Economics (MIT). Depressions--1929--Great Britain; Depressions--1929--France; Depressions--1929--Germany; Depressions--1929--United States. Causes of the depression, why it was so widespread and prolonged, and what brought about eventual recovery. 

(Depression - 1929), Eds. Melvin Dubofsky and Stephen Burwood (1990). Agriculture During the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Garland, 251 p.). Agriculture--Economic aspects--United States--History--20th century; Agriculture and state--United States--History--20th century; Family farms--United States--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--Rural conditions.

(Depression - 1929), Edited, with an introduction, by Melvyn Dubofsky and Stephen Burwood (1990). The American Economy During the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Garland, 307 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945; United States--Economic policy--To 1933; United States--Economic policy--1933-1945.

(Depression - 1929), Barry Eichengreen (1992). Golden Fetters: The Gold Standard and the Great Depression, 1919-1939. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 448 p.). John L. Simpson Professor of Economics and Professor of Political Science (University of California at Berkeley). Gold standard --History --20th century; Depressions -- 1929. Reassessment of international monetary problems that led to global economic crisis of 1930s; connections between gold standard, Great Depression that broke out in 1929; how economic policies gave rise to global crisis of 1930s; gold standard fundamentally constrained economic policies, largely responsible for creating unstable economic environment on which those policies acted; perspective on economic policies of post-World War II period, their consequences.

(Depression - 1929), Michael E. Parrish (1992). Anxious Decades: America in Prosperity and Depression, 1920-1941. (New York, NY: Norton, 529 p.). Teaches Twentieth-Century American History (University of California, San Diego). Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--History--1933-1945. Events from 1921 to 1941 have shaped modern America.

(Depression - 1929, Catherine McNicol Stock (1992). Main Street in Crisis: The Great Depression and the Old Middle Class on the Northern Plains. (Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 305 p.). South Dakota -- Social conditions; North Dakota -- Social conditions; Middle class -- South Dakota -- History -- 20th century; Middle class -- North Dakota -- History -- 20th century; Depressions -- 1929 -- South Dakota; Depressions -- 1929 -- North Dakota.

(Depression - 1929), Ed. W.R. Garside (1993). Capitalism in Crisis: International Responses to the Great Depression. (New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press, 200 p.). Depressions --1929 --Europe; Europe --Economic policy; Europe --Economic conditions --1918-1945. Economic policy of different countries during Depression era; how economic policy in country in question was shaped by determination of governments to retain certain orthodox features of economic policy which did not always meet urgent social and economic requirements of day.

(Depression - 1929), T. H. Watkins (1993). Great Depression: America in the 1930's. (Boston, MA: Little, Brown, 375 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--History--1919-1933.

(Depression - 1929), Rita Barnard (1995). The Great Depression and the Culture of Abundance: Kenneth Fearing, Nathanael West, and Mass Culture in the 1930s. (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press. 271 p.). Associate Professor of English, Director of the Comparative Literature Program (University of Pennsylvania). Fearing, Kenneth, 1902-1961 --Political and social views; West, Nathanael, 1903-1940 --Political and social views; American literature--20th century--History and criticism; Popular literature--United States--History and criticism; Literature and society--United States--History--20th century; Popular culture--United States--History--20th century; Social problems in literature; Depressions in literature; Economics in literature. Response of American leftist writers of the 1930s to rise of mass culture, continued propagation of values of consumerism during Depression.

(Depression - 1929), Barry Eichengreen (1996). Golden Fetters: The Gold Standard and the Great Depression, 1919-1939. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 480 p.). Gold standard--History--20th century; Depressions--1929- 

(Depression - 1929), Dietmar Rothermund (1996). The Global Impact of the Great Depression, 1929-1939. (New York : Routlege: New York : Routlege, 180 p.). Depressions -- 1929 -- Developing countries; Developing countries -- Economic conditions; Economic history -- 1918-1945. impact of the Great Depression on Africa, Asia and Latin America, the author examines the Keynesian theory and the role of the international gold standard. Best book on the economically decisive decade of the 20th century.

(Depression - 1929), Elmus Wicker (1996). The Banking Panics of the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 174 p.). Banks and banking--United States--History--20th century; Bank failures--United States--History--20th century; Financial crises--United States--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945.

(Depression - 1929), Eds. Michael D. Bordo, Claudia Goldin, and Eugene N. White (1998). Defining Moment: The Great Depression and the American Economy in the Twentieth Century/a>. (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 474 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions; United States--Economic policy.

(Depression - 1929), David M. Kennedy (1999). Freedom from Fear: The American People in Depression and War, 1929-1945. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 936 p.). Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; World War, 1939-1945--United States; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--History--1933-1945. Definitive history of critical decades of American century.

(Depression - 1929), T. H. Watkins (1999). The Hungry Years: America in an Age of Crisis, 1929-1939. (New York, NY: Holt, 587 p.). Former Editor of Wilderness Magazine, Teacher of History (Montana State University). Depressions--1929--United States; Depressions--1929--United States--Personal narratives; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945; United States--Social conditions--1918-1932.

(Depression - 1929), Ben S. Bernanke (2000). Essays on the Great Depression. (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 310 p.). Member of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve System, Howard Harrison and Gabrielle Snyder Beck Professor of Economics and Public Affairs (Princeton University). Depressions--1929--United States; Depressions--1929. Coherent view of economic causes, worldwide propagation of  depression. 

(Depression - 1929), Patricia Clavin (2000). The Great Depression in Europe, 1929-1939. (New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press, 244 p.). Senior Lecturer in Modern History (University of Keele). Depressions --1929 --Europe; Europe --Economic conditions -- 1918-1945. Comparative study of origins, course, consequences of deepest economic crisis in modern European history; recent research into causes of depression; why European countries chose nationalist routes to recovery (vs. international co-operation); why this failed, its consequences for international relations in 1930s.

(Depression - 1929), James R. McGovern (2000). And a Time for Hope: Americans in the Great Depression. (Westport, CT: Praeger, 354 p.). Emeritus Professor of History (University of West Florida). National characteristics, American; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--Social life and customs--1918-1945; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945. Americans' solid value systems, their diverse support systems, their religious life, role of FDR and the New Deal. 

(Depression - 1929), Studs Terkel (2000). Hard Times: An Oral History of the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Pantheon Books, 480 p. [orig. pub. 1970]). Depressions--1929--United States--Personal narratives; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945. Classic oral history of men and women who lived through Great Depression in 1930s.

(Depression - 1929), Maury Klein (2001). Rainbow's End: The Crash of 1929. . (New York, NY: Oxford University Press. New York Stock Exchange--History; Depressions--1929; Depressions--1929--United States; Stock Market Crash, 1929; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. 

(Depression - 1929), Randall E. Parker (2002). Reflections on the Great Depression. (Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 230 p.). Department of Economics (East Carolina University). Depressions --1929 --United States; United States --Economic conditions --1918-1945. Most prominent economic explanations of Great Depression, how it affected lives, experiences, subsequent thinking of economists who lived through era; reflections on economics of Great Depression, major events which occurred during those critical years; legacy of interwar generation of economists.

(Depression - 1929), William Solomon (2002). Literature, Amusement, and Technology in the Great Depression. (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 271 p.). Assistant Professor in the Departments of English and American Studies (Stanford University). American fiction--20th century--History and criticism; Depressions in literature; Literature and technology--United States--History--20th century; Popular culture--United States--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--United States; Popular culture in literature; Amusements in literature; Technology in literature; Carnival in literature; Play in literature.

(Depression - 1929), Frank G. Steindl (2004). Understanding Economic Recovery in the 1930s: Endogenous Propagation in the Great Depression. (Ann Arbor, MI: University of Michigan Press, 228 p.). Regents Professor of Economics and Ardmore Professor of Business Administration (Oklahoma State University). Depressions--1929--United States; Business cycles--United States; United States--Economic policy--To 1933; United States--Economic policy--1933-1945; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945; United States--Politics and government--1933-1945. Macroeconomic developments responsible for move back to pre-Depression level economy.

(Depression - 1929), Susan Currell (2005). The March of Spare Time: The Problem and Promise of Leisure in the Great Depression.  (Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press, 235 p.). Leisure--United States--History--20th Century; Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Social Conditions--1933-1945.

(Depression - 1929), Peter Fearon (2007). Kansas in the Great Depression: Work Relief, the Dole, and Rehabilitation. (Columbia : University of Missouri Press: Columbia : University of Missouri Press, 316 p.). Professor of Modern Economic and Social History (University of Leicester, UK). Public service employment--Kansas; New Deal, 1933-1939--Kansas; Depressions--1929--Kansas. Role of Kansas state government, of federal government, relationship between the two governments played in providing relief to those hardest hit by  Depression.

(Depression - 1929), Randall E. Parker (2007). The Economics of the Great Depression: A Twenty-First Century Look Back at the Economics of the Interwar Era. (Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar, 257 p.). Professor of Economics (East Carolina University). Depressions--1929--United States; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. Evolution, current state of economic literature on  Great Depression: status of remaining debates, what economists do, do not know about economics of interwar era, new directions economic research is taking to better understand.

(Depression - 1929), Amity Shlaes (2007). The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression. (New York, NY: HarperCollins, 464 p.). Visiting Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Syndicated Columnist at Bloomberg. Depressions--1929--United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; United States--History--1919-1933; United States--History--1933-1945; United States--Social conditions--1933-1945; United States--Economic conditions--1918-1945. Reinterpretation of Great Depression; rejects old emphasis on New Deal, turns to neglected, moving stories of individual Americans; shows how brave leadership helped establish steadfast character of America.

(Depression - 1929), Eric Rauchway (2008). The Great Depression & the New Deal: A Very Short Introduction. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 150 p.). Professor of History, Director - Center for History, Society and Culture (University of California, Davis). Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945; Depressions --1929 --United States; New Deal, 1933-1939; Depressions --1929 --Europe; United States --History --1919-1933; United States --History --1933-1945; United States --Economic conditions --1918-1945; United States --Social conditions --1933-1945; Europe --Economic conditions --1918-1945. Great policy revolution - how roots of Great Depression lay in America's post-war economic policies; how magnitude of resulting economic upheaval, ineffectiveness of old ways of dealing with financial hardships, set stage for Roosevelt's vigorous Depression-fighting policies; coming of World War II generated political will to spend massive amounts of public money needed to put Americans back to work; Cold War saw full implementation of New Deal policies abroad.

(Depression - 1929), Tomoko Shiroyama (2008). China During the Great Depression: Market, State, and the World Economy, 1929-1937. (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Asia Center, 325 p.). Associate Professor of Economic History in the Graduate School of Economics (Hitotsubashi University). Depressions --1929 --China; Financial crises --China; China --Economic conditions --1912-1949. Transformation of state-market relations in light of linkages between Chinese, world economy, impact of slump, process of recovery; only country on silver standard in international monetary system dominated by gold standard; fluctuations in international silver prices undermined China’s monetary system, destabilized its economy, led to severe deflation; state shifted position toward market. from laissez faire to committed intervention; established new monetary system (different foreign-exchange standard); required deliberate government management; economic recovery, monetary change politicized entire Chinese economy.

(Depression - 1929), Benjamin Roth; edited by James Ledbetter and Daniel B. Roth (2009). The Great Depression: A Diary. (New York, NY, PublicAffairs, 288 p.). Editor of "The Big Money" ('s Web site on business and economics); Son. Roth, Benjamin, 1894-1978 --Diaries; Depressions --1929 --United States; United States --Economic conditions --1918-1945. First-person diary account of living through Great Depression; most telling moments of Great Depression: drop in price of movie tickets, Hoover's failed free-market solutions, rise in foreclosures in  hometown, how to benefit from 'bargains' in stocks.

(Depression -1929). Alexander J. Field (2011). A Great Leap Forward: 1930s Depression and U.S. Economic Growth. (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 387 p.). Michel and Mary Orradre Professor of Economics (Santa Clara University). Depressions -- 1929 -- United States; United States -- Economic conditions -- 1918-1945; United States -- Economic conditions -- 20th century. Causes, consequences of productivity growth over past century and half, current prospects; novel claim: productive capacity grew dramatically across Depression years (1929-1941), advance provided foundation for economic and military success of United States during Second World War, golden age (1948-1973) that followed; behind backdrop of double-digit unemployment, 1930s experienced very high rates of technological, organizational innovation, fueled by maturing of privately funded research and development system, government-funded build-out of country's surface road infrastructure.

(Depression - 1929), Douglas A. Irwin (2011). Peddling Protectionism: Smoot-Hawley and the Great Depression. (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 250 p.). Robert E. Maxwell '23 Professor of Arts and Sciences in the Department of Economics (Dartmouth College). United States. Tariff Act of 1930; Tariff --United States --History --20th century; Protectionism --United States; Depressions --1929 --United States; United States --Commercial policy --History --20th century; United States --Economic conditions --20th century. America's most infamous trade law; why it largely deserves reputation for combining bad politics, bad economics and harming U.S. and world economies during Depression; politics behind Smoot-Hawley, its economic consequences, foreign reaction it provoked, aftermath and legacy; started as Republican ploy to win farm vote in 1928 election by increasing duties on agricultural imports; tariff quickly grew into logrolling, pork barrel free-for-all (increased duties all around, regardless of interests of consumers and exporters); after Herbert Hoover signed bill, U.S. imports fell sharply, other countries retaliated, increased tariffs on American goods (U.S. exports shriveled); contributed to decline in world trade, rovoked discrimination against U.S. exports that lasted decades.

(Dust Bowl), Paul Bonnifield (1979). The Dust Bowl: Men, Dirt, and Depression. (Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 232 p.). Depressions--1929--Great Plains; Droughts--Great Plains--History; Agriculture--Great Plains--History; Dust Bowl Era, 1931-1939; Great Plains--History; Great Plains--Economic conditions; Great Plains--Climate.

(Dust Bowl), Timothy Egan (2005). The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl. (Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, 320 p.). National Enterprise Reporter (New York Times). Dust Bowl Era, 1931-1939; Droughts--Great Plains--History--20th century; Dust storms--Great Plains--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--Great Plains; Great Plains--History--20th century; Great Plains--Social conditions--20th century. Portraits of people who settled the plains, stayed, survived  "black blizzards".

(Dust Bowl), James N. Gregory (1989). American Exodus: The Dust Bowl Migration and Okie Culture in California. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 338 p.). Migration, Internal--United States--History--20th century; Agricultural laborers--California--Economic conditions; Agricultural laborers--California--Social conditions; Depressions--1929--United States--History; Dust Bowl Era, 1931-1939; California--Population--History--20th century; Oklahoma--Population--History--20th century.

(Dust Bowl), Charles J. Shindo (1997). Dust Bowl Migrants in the American Imagination. (Lawrence, KS: University Press of Kansas, 252 p.). Migrant agricultural laborers in art; Arts, American--20th century; Migrant agricultural laborers--United States--History; Depressions--1929--United States; Dust Bowl Era, 1931-1939; Dust storms--Great Plains; Labor camps--California; Droughts--Great Plains; Great Plains--Rural conditions; California--Rural conditions. 

(Dust Bowl), Donald Worster (1979). Dust Bowl: The Southern Plains in the 1930s. (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 277 p.). Dust Bowl Era, 1931-1939; Agriculture--Southwestern States--History--20th century; Agriculture--Great Plains--History--20th century; Dust storms--Southwestern States--History--20th century; Dust storms--Great Plains--History--20th century; Depressions--1929--United States; Southwestern States--History--20th century; Great Plains--History--20th century. Devastating years between 1929 and 1939 in ecological. human terms.

Stefan Altorfer, Benedikt Koehler, Mark Duckenfield (2006). History of Financial Disasters 1763-1995. (London, UK: Pickering & Chatto, 1200 p.). Economic History Department (London School of Economics). Financial disasters; financial crises; economic history. Volume 1: 1763-1840s, edited by Stefan Altorfer (European Financial Crisis of 1763; European Crisis of 1772-3; Assignat Inflation during the French Revolution, 1789-97; Crisis of The Second Bank of the United States, 1818-19; London Crisis of 1825; Panic in the US of 1837; Railway Mania in the 1840s); Volume 2: 1850-1925, edited by Benedikt Koehler (Ohio Life Crisis of 1857; Overend & Gurney, 1867-9; New York's Black Friday of 1869; Vienna Crash of 1873; Crisis of 1907 that spawned the Federal Reserve Bank; German Hyperinflation of the 1920s); Volume 3: 1929-1995, edited by Mark Duckenfield (New York Stock Exchange Crash of 1929; European Collapse and World Depression of 1931; Devaluation of Sterling in 1967; US Stock Market Crash of 1987; Black Wednesday, 1992; Mexican Peso Crisis, 1994). Key economic and financial turning points that have shaped western world.

Eds. Michael J. Oliver, Derek H. Aldcroft. (2007). Economic Disasters of the Twentieth Century. (Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar, 361 p.). Professor of Economics (Ecole Suprieure de Commerce de Rennes, France); Fellow (University of Leicester, UK). United States--Economic conditions--1900-1999; United States--Economic policy. Costs, impact on specific countries and regions, global context, legacy of 20th century economic disasters; whether avoidable, whether policymakers can learn from their mistakes - First and Second World Wars, great depression, oil shocks, inflation, financial crises, stock market crashes, collapse of Soviet command economy, Third World disasters.


Economic Events - LINKS

Bound for Glory: America in Color, 1939-1943                                                   

For many people, the world of Depression-era photography in the United States can be characterized by the somber black-and-white images of rural poverty or by the vivid depictions of everyday struggles. Interestingly enough, there were a number of color images taken by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information from the years 1939 to 1943. The Library of Congress has created a delightful digital exhibition of these images to complement a current exhibition in their headquarters in Washington, DC. Visitors to the site can read an introductory essay on the collection, and then begin by perusing photographs of small children at the Vermont State Fair, homesteaders in New Mexico, and a street corner in Dillon, Montana. The site is rounded out with a link to the entire collection of color photographs hosted by the Library of Congress's American Memory Project.

Financial Crises

History of Financial Panics (1837, 1857, 1869, 1873, 1893, 1903, 1907, 1929, 1987)

Stock Market Crash of 1929




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