The History of Hoovervilles and Government Camps

1276 Words Jul 17th, 2018 6 Pages
Place yourself in 1929, it is the beginning of the Great Depression and thousands of people are migrating to California and throughout the United States in search of a position in work. Many citizens will end up in Hoovervilles and Weedpatch Camps. Weedpatch camps provided a more sanitary and secure shelter than Hoovervilles. Also, Weedpatch camps were sustained by the government while Hoovervilles were supported by only the individual that traveled to provide for their families. Although, there are many differences and similarities between Hoovervilles and Government camps. During the Great Depression millions of families lost their jobs, homes, and depleted their savings in both urban and rural areas. In 1930, 15 million people became …show more content…
Also, Hoovervilles had highly diverse populations which were mostly Scandinavians. The social atmosphere is very relaxed and Donald Francis Roy, a sociology student from University of Washington, notes, “an ethnic rainbow where men of many colors intermingled in shabby camaraderie.” (Now& Then – Seattle’s Hoovervilles during the Great Depression, Roy) There was a 29% nonwhite population which includes: 120 Filipinos, 29 African Americans, 25 Mexicans, four Native Americans, four South Americans and two Japanese. Although, the Hoovervilles has a great ethic relationship women and children were not allowed to live in Hooverville camps. These camps could contain a spokesperson and sometimes an unofficial mayor to make sure they were stay in harmony with the government. The only reason why these camps ran for as long as a decade was because they were funded by private donations and was a free-standing community until 1936 when it was destroyed. During the 1930s, the police would burn down the Hoovervilles but were rebuilt by the residents each time. In 1932 the UCL gained a tolerance to the Hoovervilles. By 1939, the Hoovervilles had to be shut down due to wartime prosperity and shipbuilding expansion for World War II. The Shack Elimination Committee sent out a notification in April to tell the people they had to leave by May 1. The government used MacArthur’s troops to burn the Hoovervilles and drive the people out using tear gas. Due to the end of Hooverville camps
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