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The City of Dallas and Federal Work Relief Programs, 1934-1940
An Exhibit of Selected Materials from the Dallas Municipal Archives

New Deal Projects in Dallas | Audio Tour (Coming Soon) | Learn More

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 WPA (Works Progress Administration); the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps); and the NYA (National Youth Administration). 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 PWA – Public Works Administration (1933), which split funding between City and federal sources and built several buildings in Fair Park; the WPA – Works Progress Administration (1935), which constructed parks and built roads; the CCC – Civilian Conservation Corps (1933), which built parks and did other outdoor construction. The CCC was most famous in Dallas for its camp at White Rock Lake, which had educational and training opportunities for young men.

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

Dealey1 Selected Dallas Municipal Archives Collection Guides:

Dallas Park and Recreation Department Plans and Drawings, 1911 - 1973

White Rock Lake, 1930 - 50

Dealey Plaza, 1940 - 1941

Parks - Works Progress Administration Records, 1939 - 1940

Exhibit design: John Slate