chapter  3
38 Pages

Evolution of Relief

The work of federal direct relief to business in many forms was carried on in semi-secrecy, with alarmed resistance to demands for public reporting of loans; at the same time, help for the unemployed must be without effective governmental organization. Public funds took the place of private charity not only in relief but in many of the preventive and health services. Relief in billions, jobs in millions, extended education, public health, and social insurance offered the only hopeful solution. The "Give-a-Job" campaign of 1931, addressed to the private citizen, was the most primitive form of work relief. Relief expenditures of family welfare agencies mounted abruptly in the winter of 1930-1931, and some could take no more applicants. Representative Oscar B. Lovette of Tennessee and others of the committee who knew agriculture referred to the amount of relief already being given in rural areas. The first administrator was Colonel Arthur Woods, who had directed unemployment relief activities under Hoover in 1922.