The October 1929 crash of the American stock market ushered in a major economic depression that would effect nearly every US citizen. The hardest hit were unemployed young men and returning World War I veterans. One out of four employable people (a 25% unemployment rate), estimated to be 12 to 15 million, lost their major source(s) of income. Their family homes and farms were lost due to failure to meet mortgage payments.
When FDR took office on March 4, 1933, he found his administration dealing with millions of idle young men that were unemployed, would soon be on welfare or potentially become criminals. Thus, the Civilian Conservation Corps was born. Today’s efforts are seen in State and National Parks nationwide.