Many families left farm fields to move to Los Angeles or the San Francisco Bay area, where they found work in shipyards and aircraft factories that were gearing up to supply the war effort.
Where did migrant workers go during the Great Depression?
Although the Dust Bowl included many Great Plains states, the migrants were generically known as “Okies,” referring to the approximately 20 percent who were from Oklahoma. The migrants represented in Voices from the Dust Bowl came primarily from Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri.
Why did migrant workers move to California?
Migration Out of the Plains during the Depression. During the Dust Bowl years, the weather destroyed nearly all the crops farmers tried to grow on the Great Plains. … Many once-proud farmers packed up their families and moved to California hoping to find work as day laborers on huge farms.
Where did the migrant workers live?
In addition to earning low wages—the lowest of any workers in the country—migrant workers also tended to live in horrible conditions. It was not uncommon for farmers to house migrant workers in shanties, shacks, chicken coops, barns, portable wagons, and even open fields.
Why were there migrant workers in the 1930s?
The Great Depression and the Dust Bowl, a period of drought that destroyed millions of acres of farmland, forces white farmers to sell their farms and become migrant workers who travel from farm to farm to pick fruit and other crops at starvation wages.
Why did Californians hate Okies?
Because they arrived impoverished and because wages were low, many lived in filth and squalor in tents and shantytowns along the irrigation ditches. Consequently, they were despised as “Okies,” a term of disdain, even hate, pinned on economically degraded farm laborers no matter their state of origin.
What was the life of a migrant farm worker like during the Depression?
The working hours were long, and many children worked in the fields with their parents. 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.
What was life like in California in the 1930s?
California was hit hard by the economic collapse of the 1930s. Businesses failed, workers lost their jobs, and families fell into poverty. While the political response to the depression often was confused and ineffective, social messiahs offered alluring panaceas promising relief and recovery.
How much did migrant workers get paid in the 1930?
As a result, wages throughout the nation fell during the Depression. Migrant workers in California who had been making 35 cents per hour in 1928 made only 14 cents per hour in 1933.
How much did a teacher make in the 1930s?
|Second class teachers||1,118||1,138|
What were migrant workers living conditions?
Farmworkers are often isolated, living in rural areas with no transportation. They experience discrimination and harassment. They must often work long hours, with little diversion or entertainment. As a result, farmworkers have high rates of anxiety, depression, and other mental health problems .
What are the working and living conditions of migrant farmers?
Not only do many workers live in crowded, unsanitary conditions, but they often lack basic utilities, live in isolated areas far away from important services like health clinics, grocery stores, and public transportation, and in many cases must pay exorbitant rates for rent.
How many people migrated to California in the 1930s?
The exact number of Dust Bowl refugees remains a matter of controversy, but by some estimates, as many as 400,000 migrants headed west to California during the 1930s, according to Christy Gavin and Garth Milam, writing in California State University, Bakersfield’s Dust Bowl Migration Archives.
What hardships did migrants face during the 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.
What did migrant workers eat in the 1930s?
Migrant families primarily subsisted on starch-based foods like potatoes, biscuits, and fried dough that would fill them up enough to complete a day’s work in the fields. The estimated annual income of agricultural workers was $450 per family.