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Encyclopedia > Works Project Administration
WPA Graphic

The Works Progress Administration (later Works Projects Administration, abbreviated WPA), was created on May 6, 1935 with the signing of Executive Order 7034. It was the largest and most comprehensive New Deal agency. It was a "make work" program that provided jobs and income to the unemployed during the Great Depression. WPA projects primarily employed blue-collar workers in construction projects across the nation, but also employed white-collar workers and artists on smaller-scale projects. With unemployment figures falling fast due to World War II-related employment, Franklin D. Roosevelt shut down the WPA on December 4, 1943.

Famous WPA projects include Camp David, Golden Gate Bridge, Federal One and the Mathematical Tables Project.

External links

  • eTexts (http://www.gutenberg.org/author/Work+Projects+Administration) of oral history of former U.S. slaves collected in the 1930s by the WPA, at Project Gutenberg

  Results from FactBites:
Work Projects Administration. The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05 (370 words)
(WPA), former U.S. government agency, established in 1935 by executive order of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt as the Works Progress Administration; it was renamed the Work Projects Administration in 1939, when it was made part of the Federal Works Agency.
WPA also conducted an education program and supervised the activities of the National Youth Administration.
There was sharp criticism of the WPA in a Senate committee report in 1939; the same year the WPA appropriation was cut, several projects were abolished, and others were curtailed.
National Park Service: Presenting Nature (Chapter 6) (2576 words)
Projects ranged from the development and improvement of trails, roads, and water systems to the construction of a wide range of park buildings and structures, the most common of which were comfort stations, ranger stations, patrol cabins, fire lookouts, garages, residences, and maintenance shops.
This work, whether in the form of concrete footings or walls, was carried out in a very different manner from that in cities or towns, where sacks of cement and aggregate stone were delivered by truck to a site and water was piped in by public utility.
PWA projects fostered an increasing reliance on modern materials that were long-lasting and durable, and development of simple and functional designs adapted to the topography and character of their setting.
  More results at FactBites »



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