From 1935 to 1940, roughly 250,000 Oklahoma migrants moved to California. A third settled in the state’s agriculturally rich San Joaquin Valley. These Dust Bowl refugees were called “Okies.” Okies faced discrimination, menial labor and pitiable wages upon reaching California.
What problems did people face during the Dust Bowl?
Drought in the Dust Bowl Years
The resulting agricultural depression contributed to the Great Depression’s bank closures, business losses, increased unemployment, and other physical and emotional hardships.
How did the Dust Bowl affect migrants?
The Dust Bowl led to a massive migration of Midwestern farmers out of the region, many of whom traveled to California in search of jobs. The World Bank predicts climate change could create as many as 143 million “climate migrants” by 2050.
What were some of the struggles that migrant workers faced?
Migrant workers were subjected to harsher working conditions and lower wages because people were desperate for work. Workers were replaceable. Too many people looking for work reduced living conditions. The migrant worker camps were primitive – no electricity and no indoor plumbing.
What problems did migrant workers face during the Great Depression?
The Great Depression of the 1930s hit Mexican immigrants especially hard. Along with the job crisis and food shortages that affected all U.S. workers, Mexicans and Mexican Americans had to face an additional threat: deportation.
How did the Dust Bowl have a negative impact on farmers?
And how did the Dust Bowl affect farmers? Crops withered and died. Farmers who had plowed under the native prairie grass that held soil in place saw tons of topsoil—which had taken thousands of years to accumulate—rise into the air and blow away in minutes. On the Southern Plains, the sky turned lethal.
Who did the Dust Bowl affect?
The Dust Bowl was the name given to the drought-stricken Southern Plains region of the United States, which suffered severe dust storms during a dry period in the 1930s. As high winds and choking dust swept the region from Texas to Nebraska, people and livestock were killed and crops failed across the entire region.
How did the Great Depression and Dust Bowl affect migrant workers?
The Great Depression and the Dust Bowl (a period of drought that destroyed millions of acres of farmland) forced white farmers to sell their farms and become migrant workers who traveled from farm to farm to pick fruit and other crops at starvation wages.
How did the Dust Bowl affect families?
The Dust Bowl forced tens of thousands of poverty-stricken families, who were unable to pay mortgages or grow crops, to abandon their farms, and losses reached $25 million per day by 1936 (equivalent to $470,000,000 in 2020).
What were typical working conditions for migrant workers?
Working conditions were often unsafe and unsanitary. Migrant workers had to follow the harvest of different crops, so they had to continue to pack up and move throughout California to find work. When the migrant workers weren’t working, they enjoyed recreational and social activities. Many sang and played instruments.
What was the migrant experience?
A complex set of interacting forces both economic and ecological brought the migrant workers documented in this ethnographic collection to California. The attempts of these displaced agricultural workers to find other work were met with frustration due to a 30 percent unemployment rate. …