The stock market crash and subsequent economic depression, known as the Great Depression, hit the deep South much harder than the rest of the country. Life was difficult for all Southerners, particularly African-Americans, during this decade, as cotton prices fell and the boll weevil wiped out crops on a large scale.
In United States history, the 1930s is made famous by the Great Depression, the worst economic depression the country has ever seen. For Southerners, the Depression made their lives even harder. Beginning in 1915, the boll weevil proliferated and wiped out crops throughout the deep South. When the boll weevil epidemic hit, many farmers and sharecroppers left their farms and moved to the city to find work. When the Great Depression hit, massive layoffs ensued in the cities. Farmers that had managed to get through the boll weevil epidemic found that cotton prices dropped from 18 cents to six cents after the stock market crash of 1929, driving many into destitution. For African-Americans living in the deep South during the 1930s, Jim Crow laws made problems worse. PBS reports that a hate group known as the Black Shirts in Atlanta picketed in the streets with signs that read that insisted that no African-Americans should be hired until every white man had a job.