Civil Works Administration

From Ohio History Central

On November 9, 1933, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt announced the creation of the Civil Works Administration (CWA). The CWA was part of Roosevelt's New Deal. Roosevelt hoped that his New Deal would allow Americans to cope with the Great Depression, would help end the current economic downturn, and would help prevent another depression from occurring in the future.

The CWA was to hire workers to assist in the creation of public projects. This program hired both men and women. The State Relief Commission directed the CWA's efforts in Ohio. The CWA's projects focused on the repair or construction of public buildings, roadways, and parks. The CWA began more than six thousand projects in Ohio alone. By January 1934, the Civil Works Administration had provided employment to more than four million Americans, including over 200,000 Ohioans. During its existence, the CWA paid approximately forty-nine thousand dollars in wages to Ohioans, helping them to meet their needs during the Great Depression. Unskilled workers received fifty cents per hour, while skilled workers were paid $1.20 per hour. The Civil Works Administration remained in operation until March 1934, when the federal government terminated the program due to its tremendous costs.

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