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The Year 1933 Major News Events in History

  1. 1933 was the one of the worst years during the great depression
  2. Strong winds strip the topsoil from the drought affected farms in Midwest creating Dust Bowls
  3. Repeal of prohibition in United States allowing 3.2% beer and wine sales when the 21st Amendment is passed
  4. Machine gun is demonstrated by Japanese Scientist firing 1,000 shot per minute
  5. Construction of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge began
  6. The Civil Works Administration creates temporary construction jobs as a part of the New Deal.
  7. Albert Einstein emigrates to the United States from Germany
  8. Wiley Post becomes the first person to fly solo around the world
  9. The first drive-in movie theater is opened in New Jersey.

More Detailed Information on each Event and those not included can be found below

What Happened in 1933 Important News and Events, Key Technology and Popular Culture

1933 Major News Stories including 25% US unemployment, Repeal of prohibition laws, Strong Winds With Drought strip topsoil causing dust storms, This was the one of the worst years of the great depression and very few countries around the world not affected, Alcatraz becomes a federal penitentiary, Civil War In Cuba,

1933 was the worst year of the depression with unemployment peaking at 25.2% with ( 1 in 4 people unemployed ) this year . Adolf Hitler became the chancellor of Germany and opened the first concentration camp at Dachau. 10's of thousands travelled the road and rail in America looking for work , and the US banking system which was under great strain was propped up by the US government ( US banking act of 1933 )to try and stop the panic of people withdrawing their money from the banks. the continuing drought in the Midwest made even more of the land into dust bowls

What Events Happened in 1933

Around The World -- The Great Depression

Nearly every country in the world was suffering from high unemployment

More of the History, Information and Timeline For the Great Depression around the world

1933 was the one of the worst years during the great depression and Very few countries around the world were not affected and because of the Great Depression many leaders came to power who may not have done in normal times, a good example of this is the rise of Hitler in Germany where unemployment was high and following their defeat in World War I German morale was at an all time low. Back in the thirties each country did their own thing including increasing interest rates, Implementing Import Tariffs, leaving the Gold Standard. Because of lack of a world wide coherent strategy many feel the Great Depression lasted longer than it should have done.

United States -- Dust Bowl

Strong winds strip the topsoil from the drought affected farms in Midwest creating Dust Bowls

More of the History, Information and Timeline For the Dust Bowl Years

1. Due To Farm Automation ( Tractors and Beginning Of Combines ) From 1925 to 1930 Land Under Cultivation Quadruples

2. Poor Farming Practices also increase with agricultural methods used that encouraged erosion.

3. First Severe Dust Storms Begin Late this year stripping away the topsoil

4. Severe Drought begins the following year and Dust Storms Strip away more topsoil leading to the area of the Great Plains Becoming a Dust Bowl

5. Over the next few years due to soil erosion 2.5 million people are forced to leave the Great Plains states because they could no longer earn a living from the land.

5. Following the Dust Bowl years the government implemented massive conservation efforts and education including soil conservation and anti-erosion techniques, including crop rotation, and farmers changed farming practices allowing much of the land to recover.

United States -- Repeal of prohibition

Repeal of prohibition in United States allowing 3.2% beer and wine sales when the 21st Amendment is passed repealing the 18th Amendment

More of the History, Information and Timeline For Prohibition in The United States

1. Prohibition, is the practice of prohibiting the manufacture, transportation, import, export, sale, and consumption of alcohol and alcoholic beverages.

2. Prohibition was a reform movement sponsored by evangelical Protestant churches

3. The Anti-Saloon League became the political driving force for Prohibition ( 1890 - 1920 )

4. The 18th Amendment / the Volstead Act ( Prohibition ) began on January 17th, 1920

5. Gangsters, including Al Capone controlled speakeasies and Bootlegging making millions

6. Bootlegging ( illegal business of smuggling alcoholic beverages )

7. Speakeasies ( establishment that illegally sells alcoholic beverages )

8. Speakeasies also called blind pig bars or blind tiger bars

9. Prohibition laws were enforced differently around the country

10. 21st Amendment is passed repealing the 18th Amendment ( Repeal of prohibition ) on December 5,

18th Amendment / Prohibition Timeline

Cost of Living 1933

Average Cost of new house $5,750.00

Average wages per year $1,550.00

Average Monthly Rent $18.00 per month

Average Laborers Wage $20.00 per week

Plymouth 6 Car $445.00

Cost of a gallon of Gas 10 cents

A loaf of Bread 7 cents

A LB of Hamburger Meat 11 cents

Vacuum Cleaner $17.75

Newport Boulevard Ladies Hat $1.69

Silk and Rayon Stockings 39 cents a Pair

Health Building Tonic 89 cents

Campbells Vegetable Soup 11 cents

1933 Radio $52.00

Prices for UK guides in Pounds Sterling

Average House Price 530

Born This Year

Joan Collins May 23rd

Larry King November 19th

Yoko Ono February 18th

Roman Polanski August 18

Michael Caine March 14th -- London, England

Michael Dukakis November 3rd -- Brookline, Massachusetts, U.S.

Marty Feldman July 8th -- London, England

Jayne Mansfield April 19th -- Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, United States

Kray Twins October 24th -- Hoxton, East London, England

Willie Nelson April 30th -- Abbott, Texas, U.S.

Other Major Events From 1933

Germany -- People's Car

Adolf Hitler declared his intentions for a state-sponsored "People's Car" program.

More of the History, Information and Timeline For The People's Car

1. Adolf Hitler declared his intentions for a state-sponsored "Volkswagen" program.

2. The prefix Volks ("People's")

3. Basic vehicle capable of transporting two adults and three children at 100 km/h (62 mph)

4. Ferdinand Porsche begins work on The People's Car June 22 1934

5. Prototypes of the car called the "KdF-Wagen 1936

6. The building of the new factory for the Volkswagen started 26 May 1938

7. Production is ended with few cars made in 1939 due to World War II

8. After the end of World War II British Army officer Major Ivan Hirst, REME Supervises Production of the Volkswagen at the Factory.

9. The name Volkswagen Beetle was never officially labelled until 1968 ( was called Volkswagen Type 1 up till then.

10. By 1946 the factory was producing 1,000 cars a month

11. British, American and French motor industries were offered the factory and the Volkswagen Beetle

12. Every major manufacturer turned it down saying the car would never sell in quantity.

13. By 1973 there were 16 million Volkswagen Beetle's manufactured.

Japan -- Machine gun

Machine gun is demonstrated by Japanese Scientist firing 1,000 shot per minute

More of the History, Information and Timeline For the Machine Gun

1. A machine gun is a fully automatic mounted or portable firearm,

2. The Gatling gun ( required Hand Power ) designed by the American inventor Dr. Richard J. Gatling in 1861

3. The Maxim machine gun was the first self-powered machine gun ( Fired 450-600 rounds/min ) invented by Sir Hiram Maxim in 1884

4. Japanese Scientist shows Machine Gun firing 1,000 shots per minute

5. Current Machine Guns can fire 4,000 shots per minute

United States - Golden Gate Bridge Construction

Construction of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge began during January. The iconic orange suspension bridge was designed in the art deco style by Irving Morrow and the chief engineers were Joseph Strauss and Charles Ellis. It was completed in 1937 and connected the city of San Francisco and Marin County, California. The bridge spans 4,200 feet and is one of the longest and tallest suspension bridges in the world. It cost between $27 million and $35 million to build at the time and was financed by a bond measure due to a lack of readily available funds during the Great Depression.

United States - National Labor Board

The United States government establishes the National Labor Board (NLB) during August. The agency was created as a part of the National Industrial Recovery Act and National Recovery Administration. The purpose of the National Labor Board was to mediate labor disputes between labor unions and employers. It consisted of seven members, three heads of labor unions, three heads of industry, and the chairman who was US Senator Robert F. Wagner. The NLB had very little authority and President Roosevelt made several executive orders to strengthen it but in 1934 it was dissolved and replaced by the National Labor Relations Board which took the lessons from the NLB and became a more useful organization.

United States - CWA Created

The Civil Works Administration creates temporary construction jobs as a part of the New Deal.

More Information for the Civil Works Administration

U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt unveils the Civil Works Administration (CWA) during November . As part of the "New Deal" the Civil Works Administration was created as a short-term employment operation that helped create temporary construction jobs for about 4 million people. The CWA was dismantled by March of 1934 but for a brief time it helped millions get back to work in the midst of the Great Depression. The jobs provided by the CWA helped to build much needed infrastructure across the country. The CWA was later replaced with the more ambitious Works Progress Administration (WPA).

United States -- Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein emigrates to the United States from Germany

More Information and Timeline for Albert Einstein

Physicist Albert Einstein renounces his German citizenship as he moves to the United States to become a professor of theoretical physics at Princeton in October . Einstein had been known as a pacifist and was Jewish, both factors that contributed to his fear of the new Nazi government that was taking over Germany. Einstein went on to urge President Roosevelt to increase American efforts on researching uranium with the intention of developing nuclear weaponry before Germany had a chance to do so. Einstein did not gain his United States citizenship until 1940.

Worldwide - First Solo Around the World Flight

Wiley Post becomes the first person to fly solo around the world in July. Post left from Floyd Bennett Field in New York and returned after 7 days, 18 hours, and 49 minutes. Post made several stops along the way including one in Berlin, several in the Soviet Union, Alaska, and Canada. He flew a Lockheed 5C Vega named “Winnie Mae.” He had previously set the record for a non-solo around the world flight in the same place with navigator Harold Gatty in 1931.

United States -- The Great Depression

Unemployment In The United States Reaches Highest Level in the winter of 1932 / 1933 with nearly 1 in 3 people unemployed

More of the History, Information and Timeline For the Great Depression In the United States

1. Wall Street Crash Occurs in October 1929

2. Banks Begin to Fail in 1930 ( many through exposure to the market crash )

3. NO Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) in place so people withdraw savings from banks making situation worse

4. Smoot-Hawley Tariff act ( June 17 News Events 1930 ) raised U.S. tariffs on over 20,000 imported goods to record levels

5. For the first couple of years President Herbert Hoover believed the Economy would sort itself out.

6. By 1932 Hundreds-of-thousands find themselves homeless and began congregating in shanty towns or tent cities ( Hoovervilles ) or travel the country looking for work.

7. President Herbert Hoover signs the Emergency Relief and Construction Act which created the Reconstruction Finance Corporation which released funds for public works projects across the country.

8. The Reconstruction Finance Corporation spent $1.5 billion in 1932, $1.8 billion this year, and $1.8 billion in 1934

9. Herbert Hoover is defeated by Franklin D. Roosevelt who becomes US President on March 4th,

10. President Franklin D. Roosevelt does the following during his first year of office to address the Great Depression

11. Incorporates and streamlines Reconstruction Finance Corporation into the "New Deal"

12. National Recovery Administration (NRA) which Set maximum prices and wages and competitive conditions in all industries, Cut farm production so as to raise prices and make it possible to earn a living in farming,

14. President Roosevelt gives his first " fireside chat " on March 12th in a radio broadcast

15. As the number affected by poverty increases diseases including Diphtheria, Tuberculosis and scarlet fever increase

16. President Franklin D. Roosevelt announces the creation of 4 million public works jobs

17. Work Starts on The Golden Gate Bridge

18. Congress agrees to the Home Owners Refinancing Act as part of the larger NEW DEAL

19. The Emergency Banking Act is passed to save the run on small banks causing them to go into bankruptcy

Century of Progress World’s Fair

The 1933 World’s Fair opened on May 27 and was held in Chicago. It was formally known as the “Century of Progress International Exposition.” The exposition was held at Northerly Island near the Museum Campus area of Chicago’s lake front. The theme of many exhibits and structures at the World’s Fair featured the Art Deco and Art Moderne design styles which were at the height of their popularity and the exposition was intended to provide hope for a better future during the Great Depression. Much of the funding for the fair was provided privately as there was a lack of public resources available. It was set to end in November of 1933 but was so popular that it was extended through October 31, 1934.

U.S. - First Drive-In Movie Theater

The first drive-in movie theater is opened in New Jersey.

More Information for the first Drive-In theater

The very first drive-in movie theater is opened during June in the United States. It was created by Richard Hollingshead and called the "Park-In Theater." Located in Camden, New Jersey, it could accommodate about 400 vehicles at one time and it cost 25 cents per car plus 25 cents per person to attend a screening. Hollingshead had patented the idea that same year and as the concept became popular his patent was overturned in 1949, paving the way for even more drive-in theaters to be created. The drive-in theater reached its peak in the late 1950's with about 5,000 drive-ins around the country. The popularity of the drive-in began its steady decline in the 1970s and has continued to disappear since, it is estimated that fewer than 500 operating drive-ins exist today.

United Kingdom -- Nuclear Reaction

Physicist Leo Szilard has the idea that a nuclear chain reaction is possible.

More Information and Timeline for Leo Szilard Nuclear Reaction.

Physicist Leo Szilard comes up with the idea for a nuclear chain reaction on the 12th of September while in London. In 1934 he filed for a patent on his idea of a "neutronic reactor." He continued to work on this idea and joined forces with another famed physicist Enrico Fermi. They came to the conclusion that an atomic bomb could be made with Uranium. Due to this conclusion, in 1939 Szilard wrote a letter to President Roosevelt that was signed by Albert Einstein urging the U.S. government to research and develop nuclear weaponry before Nazi Germany could do so themselves. This lead to the creation of the Manhattan Project. In 1942, Szilard and Fermi created the first man-made self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction in December of 1942.

United States -- King Kong

The film King Kong premieres during March.

More Information for the film King Kong

The film "King Kong" premieres at Radio City Music Hall and the RKO Roxy in New York City during March . The film, considered by many to be one of the best horror films ever made, told the story of a gigantic pre-historic ape who was found and taken to New York by a film crew where he wreaks havoc on the city. Much of the plot revolves around King Kong's infatuation with an actress from the crew but the film also features many adventure-filled moments and battle scenes between King Kong and either the humans or other creatures in his surrounding environment. The film starred Fay Wray, Robert Armstrong, and Bruce Cabot. "King Kong" was quite successful after its release and received mostly positive reviews as it was considered ground-breaking in its use of special effects at that time in cinema history.

Technology 1933


Inventions Invented by Inventors and Country ( or attributed to First Use )

Electron Microscope Germany by Ernst Ruska

Drive in Movie Theater USA by Richard Hollingshead

Popular Culture 1933

Shirley Temple signs a contract with Fox when she was 5 years old

The original King Kong Movie is shown

The First ever drive in Theatre is established in New Jersey

The Chocolate chip cookie is invented

The Board Game Monopoly is invented

Other News Events 1933

Hitler appointed Chancellor of Germany

Adolf Hitler appointed Chancellor of Germany Germany

Adolf Hitler bans all other political parties turning Germany into a One Party State

Enabling Act

The Reichstag passes the Enabling Act, making Adolf Hitler dictator of Germany. and the Gestapo is established

Germany Quits the League of Nations causing concern over German Intentions towards France and other European Countries.


The inoculation in the fight against diphtheria begins in the Western World

20th Amendment to the US Constitution

The 20th Amendment to the US Constitution Is Ratified on January 23rd which establishes the beginning and ending of the terms of the elected federal officials.

Wiley Post

Wiley Post becomes the first man to fly solo around the world


Alcatraz becomes a federal penitentiary.

"The Akron" airship

The dirigible airship "The Akron" crashes

"Peace In Our Time"

On September 30th British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain returns from Germany and announced to the world "Peace In Our Time"

Typhus Epidemic

Typhus Epidemic strikes thousands in Moscow

Cuba Civil War

Civil War In Cuba forcing American businesses to close up shop.

Yellow River

Yellow River breaches it's banks in China creating mass starvation in 33 due to crop failure.


Tornado's strike Kentucky and Tennessee leaving 61 dead

Loch Ness Monster

The Loch Ness Monster is sighted for the first time in modern times on May 2

Calendar For The Year 1933

1933 Calendar

Major World Political Leaders 1933

Australia -- Prime Minister -- Joseph Lyons --

Brazil -- President -- Getúlio Vargas --

Canada -- Prime Minister -- Richard Bedford Bennett --

Germany -- Chancellor -- Adolf Hitler -- From January 30

Italy -- Prime Minister -- Benito Mussolini --

Japan -- Prime Minister -- Makoto Saito --

Mexico -- President -- Abelardo L. Rodríguez --

Russia / Soviet Union -- General Secretary of the Central Committee -- Joseph Stalin --

South Africa -- Prime Minister -- James Barry Munnik Hertzog --

United States -- President -- Herbert Hoover -- Till March 4,

United States -- President -- Franklin D. Roosevelt -- From March 4,

United Kingdom -- Prime Minister -- Ramsay MacDonald --