To heal the Great Depression, along with creating laws like the Glass-Steagall Act to stop Wall Street corruption, FDR created many new programs like the awesome Civilian Conservation Corps.
One of the CCC’s jobs was to heal the Dust Bowl. The Dust Bowl happened because of incorrect farming methods that virtually destroyed America’s topsoil.
Within his first 100 days of office in 1933, President Roosevelt created and ordered the Civilian Conservation Corps to plant a huge belt of more than 3 BILLION TREES from Canada to Abilene, Texas. The trees would act as windbreaks and hold the water and soil in place.
And the CCC did it. And they became known as The Tree Army.
These previously jobless young guys who joined The Tree Army were able to send $25 dollars home to their families every month. That is a lot of dough in 1930’s money.
They planted a mindboggling 3 billion trees-and helped build more than 800 parks nationwide.
The government also began educating farmers on soil conservation techniques. The farmers were paid a dollar an acre to practice one of the new to them (yet actually ancient) methods like terracing and biodiverse agriculture. By 1938, the massive conservation effort had reduced the amount of blowing soil by 65%
FDR’s Tree Army singlehandedly saved our nation’s topsoil.
This documentary is awesome:
“American Experience: The Civilian Conservation Corps”
PBS. First aired November 2, 2009