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About this collection

The New Deal Collection (1933-1939) consists of select materials, mainly photographs, from an assortment of Ohio Historical Society collection holdings. In a partnership with the Ohio Humanities Council, materials were selected to present Ohio's role as an example of national New Deal policies and initiatives. The collection exhibits artifacts illustrating New Deal programs launched during the Depression Decade, including relief initiatives created by the State of Ohio, as well as federal programs. The collection covers a range of photographs from what became labeled as the "alphabet soup" agencies: Ohio Relief Production Units (ORPU), Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), Federal Writers' Project (FWP), National Youth Administration (NYA), Public Works of Art Project (PWAP), and the Works Progress Administration (WPA). The collection is a significant piece documenting the role played by ordinary Ohioans in making a New Deal.

 

Collection Overview


  • African American Ex-slave portraits -- Photographs taken by staff of the Federal Writers' Project in conjunction with interviews conducted with former slaves living in Ohio.
  • New Straitsville Mine Fire -- Photographs of WPA stopping the spread of fire, smoke rising from the underground fires, a map of the territory affected by the mine fires and a street scene in New Straitsville, Ohio.
  • National Youth Administration documents -- Select primary source materials of the NYA formerly located on the Ohio State University campus. Documents include a NYA statement of objectives, project requisition request and select work cards listing project assignment and pay rate.
  • Ohio post office murals -- Select photographs taken by Connie Girard in 1988 of public art murals created by artists working for the Treasury Department's Section of Fine Arts. A government-created agency launched not only to employ artists, but also to bring fine art into the daily lives of all people.
  • Portsmouth 1937 Flood -- Select photographs of the flood damage in Portsmouth, including the WPA role in sandbagging, flood wall construction, and rescue efforts.
  • State Relief Commission of Ohio and Its Activities -- A photographic record of certain work relief projects. In 1932, the Ohio legislature created the State Relief Commission. The commission was to coordinate state efforts to help Ohioans. Beginning in 1933, the commission directed the distribution of funds under the Federal Emergency Relief Act (FERA) which was replaced in 1935 by the WPA.
  • Civilian Conservation Corps Photographs --- Photographs of CCC workers constructing buildings, bridges and trails at Ohio Historical Society sites (i.e. Fort Hill, Fort Ancient, Moundbuilders and Octagon).
 
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