Article by Augustus Landson on "The Charleston Insurrection of 1919," WPA Negro Writer's Project, 1941

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Document Description:

The Federal Writer’s Project (FWP), as part of the Works Progress Administration, published this guide to South Carolina in 1941.  In 1935, the FWP hired unemployed teachers, librarians, and attorneys to gather information about each of the forty-eight states.  The South Carolina WPA Guide includes town histories and “tours” of the state, as well as information about folklore, music, agriculture, and industry making it a standard reference for anyone interested in South Carolina history and culture. This section discusses “The Negro,” outlining the white perspective on poverty, illiteracy, and race relations in the state.  Although the WPA had originally planned to publish a separate Negro Guide to the state, the work of the project was heavily edited into this ten-page chapter in the white version of the guide.  The FWP provided employment opportunities for those out of work, but failed to overcome racial stereotypes and give African Americans a chance to tell their story in their own words. 

Citation:

South Carolina: The WPA Guide to the Palmetto State. Compiled by workers of the Writer's Program of the Work Projects Administration in the State of South Carolina.  New York: Oxford University Press, 1941.  Reprint, Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1988, 53-4. 

Correlating SC Social Studies Academic Standards: 

Standard 3-5: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the major developments in South Carolina in the late nineteenth century and the twentieth century.

Indicator 3-5.5 Explain the effects of the Great Depression and the New Deal on daily life in South Carolina, including the widespread poverty and unemployment and the role of the Civilian Conservation Corps.

Standard 5-4: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the economic boom-and-bust in America in the 1920s and 1930s, its resultant political instability, and the subsequent worldwide response.

Indicator 5-4.3 Explain the immediate and lasting effect on American workers caused by innovations of the New Deal, including the Social Security Act, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and the Civilian Conservation Corps.

Standard 8-6: The student will demonstrate an understanding of South Carolina’s development during the early twentieth century.

Indicator 8-6.5 Explain the effects of the Great Depression and the lasting impact of New Deal programs on South Carolina, including the Rural Electrification Act, the Civilian Conservation Corps, Works Progress Administration and Public Works Administration building projects, the Social Security Act, and the Santee Cooper electricity project.

Standard USHC-7: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the economic boom-and-bust in America in the 1920s and 1930s, its resultant political instability, and the subsequent worldwide response.

Indicator USHC-7.5 Compare the first and second New Deals as responses to the economic bust of the Great Depression, including the rights of women and minorities in the workplace and the successes, controversies, and failures of recovery and reform measures such as the labor movement.

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WPA Guide to SC

Page 53

WPA Guide to SC

Page 54

 

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