How The Great Depression And World War II Affected Ohio

During the Depression, millions of American workers lost their jobs. In Ohio by 1933, more than 40% of factory workers and 67% of construction workers were unemployed. In 1932, Ohio’s unemployment rate for all residents reached 37.3%. Industrial workers who retained their jobs usually faced reduced hours and wages. These people had a difficult time supporting their families. Many of Ohio’s city workers moved to the countryside, where they could grow enough food to feed their families.  

World War II formally ended the Great Depression in the United States, as millions of unemployed men and women returned to work to produce items for the war effort. Ohioans played a critical role in helping the United States obtain victory in World War II. Approximately 839,000 Ohioans, roughly 12% of the State’s entire population in 1940, served in the armed forces during the conflict. Ohio civilians also actively participated in the war effort, joining in scrap drives and growing victory gardens. Victory Gardens were an alternative to rationing. By 1945, some 20 million such gardens were in use and accounted for about 40% of all vegetables consumed in the U.S. Thanks to the efforts of Ohioans and other Americans, the United States emerged from World War II triumphant.  

Bob Stilwell

Retired Manufacturing Supervisor since 2008. I'm a member of the American Legion Post 703 In Parma,Ohio. Active Member of the Parma Heights Historical Society. I write Memorials for an internet group called "Find A Grave"

Volume 9, Issue 1, Posted 1:52 PM, 01.05.2017