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Hooverville

HOOVERVILLE


Hooverville was a derogatory term used to describe the ramshackle towns that were built and inhabited by millions of homeless and unemployed people in communities across the United States during the Great Depression. Named after Herbert Hoover (18741964), who was president from 19291933, when the Depression began, Hoovervilles typically consisted of makeshift homes made from cardboard, tin, crates, scrap lumber, and other discarded materials. Hoovervilles generally sprang up within the inner cities of the country's most populated metropolitan areas. For daily subsistence residents depended on the charity of nearby bakeries and produce houses that would make periodic deliveries of stale bread or gristly meat. Soup kitchens were established in several Hooverville communities. Residents cooked their food in cans when they cooked it at all. Newspapers used to keep the residents warm were called "Hoover blankets."

Health, fire, and law enforcement officials closely regulated many Hoovervilles, enacting requirements that tenements be above ground, have a certain number of windows, and be kept clear of debris and human waste. Some Hoovervilles assembled a rudimentary government of their own, electing a mayor, city council, and police chief. Hooverville tenements were bought and sold like other homes, though prices rarely exceeded $30. By the onset of World War II (19391945) most Hoovervilles had disappeared, as the nation's unemployed and homeless began returning to an economy that was mobilizing for military production. A number of Hoovervilles, however, lingered through the early 1950s.

See also: Great Depression, Poverty

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open-hearth process

open-hearth process Method of producing steel in a furnace heated by overhead flames. The flames come from gas or oil burners, and oxygen may be blown through the furnace to increase its temperature. Pig iron, scrap steel and limestone are heated together. Various impurities form slag, which is removed from the surface of the molten metal. Other materials are added to the metal to produce steel of the required type.

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Hooverville

Hooverville in the US, a shanty town built by unemployed and destitute people during the Depression of the early 1930s, named after Herbert Hoover (1874–1964), during whose presidency such accommodation was built.

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open-hearth process

open-hearth process: see steel.

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