This document based questions asks students to discuss the causes of the Great Depression that grew throughout the 1920's. Before students write an answer to the essay they have learned about six basic causes, which are then woven into the following prompt:
How did the six factors of 1. Problems for Farmers, 2. Uneven Distribution of Wealth, 3. Overuse of Credit, 4. Problems for Business and Industry, 5. Crash of the Stock Market, and 6. Run on the Banks cause the Great Depression? Be sure to explain all six causes AND identify which one you believe was the biggest cause and why.
Students are provided with the following documents to help them craft their answer:
A: An ad encouraging the use of consumer credit
B: Assessment of stock market speculation
C: Chart on income distribution in the 1920's
D: Analysis of practice of buying on margin
E: An examination of weakness in the banking sector
F: Cartoon illuminating overproduction in agriculture
G: Analysis of increasing consumer debt
H: Photograph of the "run on the banks"
I: An examination of overproduction in industry
J: Chart on increasing unemployment
This assignment can easily be used with either an AP United States history class or a regular level U.S. history class with minor modification.