Devastated by Drought


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In May of 1934, the dust bowl was not just a concern to the Central and Great Plains.  National leaders in Washington, D.C. and President Franklin Roosevelt recognized the need to address the growing problem (Egan, 2006).  Leaders began to recognize that farmers struggling in a difficult economic climate increased crop yield in order to make ends meet.  As a result, as supply and demand theory illustrated, high production drove prices down, yet farmers continued to increase production in an attempt to cover costs.  Increased production lent itself to greater land management troubles and thus when the drought hit, both economic and land management problems were multiplied. 

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Certain members of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's administration realized the average American's fate was closely tied to the Dust Bowl farmers.  Hugh Hammond Bennett gained the support of Congress with the help of a perfectly timed storm from the plains that hit Washington, D.C. just as Bennett was testifying before a congressional committee. 

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Experiencing a debilitation dust storm for the first time in the Capital, Congress was motivated to begin action on legislation to address national erosion problems through a focus on improving farming techniques.

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