to the Roosevelt Administration
Poverty spread among Americans during the thirties more than in any previous depression. People tried to conceal their poverty, but as countless Americans came to depend on breadlines, the American ideal of self-reliance had to be questioned.
After three years had passed without any sign of improvement, people became impatient and started actively protesting. Farmers were among the first to protest and demonstrate, followed by war veterans in 1932.
A so-called "bonus-army" of 15,000 protesters marched on Washington that year. General Patten, decided to act beyond the President's orders, chasing the peaceful protesters out of the city. He resorted to the use of tanks and teargas -- an unpopular measure for which President Hoover had to take the blame.
1932 Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected president. His primary goal was to
reignite hope in the American people. To achieve this goal, he refrained from
taking the side of business interests, like his predecessor had done. Instead,
the new president implemented a wide range of experimental policies in order
to find a way out of the economic -- and by now social -- crisis. For this
purpose he gathered a "brain trust" largely consisting of academics
who were encouraged to find solutions for the pressing problems of hunger
and the deteriorating economy.