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Jarrow during the early 1930s Assignment

From source A you can learn the following things about Jarrow during the early 1930s. Specifically you can discover how the Depression affected the general standard of living.

Jarrow was a very rundown town in general, “The streets were becoming dilapidated”, which shows the lack of Government money going into the town, and the people were badly off, as there was no proper social security system to provide welfare money.

There were also long term problems with unemployment because “there was no prospect of a job”, either in 1922, or for many years after, because after the First World War fewer ships were needed, and Jarrow was mainly a shipbuilding town.

The man became a Jarrow councillor voluntarily, with no payment because he knew that unemployment rates were high, and could possibly increase further, and so he willingly “pledged to do whatever could for Jarrow”. He would have known exactly what was going on because he was an elected official and an unemployed man.

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Then in 1931, two years after the Wall Street Crash, “everything went bankrupt”, and so because there was no-one wanting ships because of the collapse of world trade, no-one in Jarrow was employed making them, so no one was being paid, so everyone was bankrupt, and because food suppliers had no money to buy in foods, and consumers had no money to buy food, many were hungry, which is shown when the man writes “Often my wife and I went without a meal on Sunday in order to feed our children”.

People in Jarrow were also poorly dressed, as they could not afford new clothes, and had to continuously mend and patch up their clothes themselves.

From this extract I have learnt that in Jarrow in the early 1930’s, most people were unemployed, and as a consequence they were poor, hungry and inadequately clothed. This situation had been going on for about 10 years and things had got considerably worse as a result of the Wall Street crash of 1929.

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