Municipal Archives

The City of Dallas and Federal Work Relief Programs, 

The Great Depression and Roosevelt's New Deal

The New Deal was a program of various new agencies to provide government-sponsored work for the unemployed between 1933-1941.  Nicknamed the “Alphabet Agencies” for the dozens of acronyms, the most well known included the Works Progress Administration (WPA); the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC); and the National Youth Administration (NYA).  These programs employed millions nationwide, and tens of thousands in Texas alone. In the end, more than $100 million in Federal money came to Texas for the relief of its citizens.

Federal Programs in Dallas included the Public Works Administration (PWA) (1933), which split funding between City and federal sources and built several buildings in Fair Park, the WPA (1935), which constructed parks and built roads; the CCC (1933), which built parks and did other outdoor construction. The CCC was most famous in Dallas for its camp at White Rock Lake, where educational and training opportunities for young men were available.

This online exhibit of the New Deal explores the living heritage of those programs in Dallas.     

Selected Dallas Municipal Archives Collection Guides:
Dallas Park and Recreation Department Plans and Drawings, 1911-1960
White Rock Lake, 1930-50
Dealey Plaza, 1940-1941
Park Department Works Progress Administration Records, 1939-1940
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