By: Hailey and Tariney

Could you imagine living in a cardboard box? Millions of people did just that during the Great Depression.

Images with neighboring call numbers Rothstein, Arthur, 1915-1985

Many events in the Great Depression started Hoovervilles. Hoovervilles are places were for poor people and people who had lost their jobs. One of the causes of Hoovervilles was loss of jobs. Banks also loaned businesses and farmers money so when it was time to pay they couldn’t pay them back. Many bank failures wiped out the savings of millions of people. Many people who kept or found jobs had to take salary cuts. The Federal Reserve couldn’t increase the money in circulation because the US had a fixed exchange rate. The declines in available money caused a drop in production and a rise in unemployment. About 9,000 banks in the United States closed from January 1930 to March 1933. As you can see there were many causes that led to Hoovervilles.

Hoovervilles were found in many different places. They were usually
Hooverville shack with outdoor store Rothstein, Arthur, 1915-1985
close to a source of water. Also, they could be found in vacant areas in the poor section of town. Hoovervilles could also be found under bridges. Another place Hoovervilles were located were in conduits. Conduits are large pipes. Hoovervilles were located in the outskirts of major cities like New York City and Chicago. Almost every major city had a Hooverville.

Have you ever wondered what it was like to live in a Hooverville? Well, you’re about to find out. Hoovervilles were for people who had lost their jobs and didn’t have a home. The houses that they lived in were sometimes made of cardboard, lumber, glass, and anything else they could find lying around. Hoovervilles were sometimes called cardboard jungles. Also, people dug holes in the ground and laid something on top of it for homes. Hoovervilles had no electricity, running water, or toilets. In Hooverviles people
Dwellers in circleville's Hooverville Rothstein, Arthur, 1915-1985
sometimes would stuff their clothes with paper to make blankets. Did you know that some families put rafts on water for homes? As you can see Hoovervilles were not the most luxurious places to live in.

Clearly, Hoovervilles were not a place where people wanted to live. They were unsafe and unsanitary. They were a product of the Great Depression. Americans are determind to never let Hoovervilles happen again.


“Hoovervilles”. w//ww.worlhistoryonline.com//.http://www.history.com/topics/hoovervilles

Mitchener, Kris James. "Great Depression." World Book Student. World Book, 2012. Web. 21 Mar. 2012 http://worldbookonline.com/student/article?id=ar234080&st=hoovervilles&sc=-1&hl=1#stw

Ruth, Amy. Growing Up In The Great Depression. Minneapolis:Lerner Publications, 2003. Print