The astonishing story of how a depressed rural region was transformed by the Crash of 1929 into a scene of vibrant activity and record employment. Gold from its mines made boom towns of Grass Valley and Nevada City while the rest of America staggered under the burdens of unemployment and financial failure. Author Gage McKinney interviewed dozens of survivors of the terrible thirties and most assured him there was “no Depression here.” In fact, many octogenarians spoke nostalgically about the “good times” they experienced before World War II. Refugees from the cities and the Dust Bowl found jobs that paid living wages, and the newcomers soon were buying homes and automobiles and appliances, further spurring the local economy. The population of the area doubled between 1930 and 1940 and benefited from President Roosevelt’s work relief programs that renewed the local infrastructure.
632 pp, 150 illus, 3 maps; paperback $34.00